Four cities have filed a lawsuit against the Trump administration, arguing that the president is violating constitutional law by following through on his promise to “let Obamacare implode.”
Since Congress failed to repeal the Affordable Care Act last year, President Donald Trump has attempted to weaken the program through eliminating protections, discouraging enrollment, and driving up costs, the lawsuit argues. According to court filings, this directly violates a clause in the U.S. constitution, which states the president and their administration must “take care that the laws be faithfully executed.”
Baltimore, Chicago, Cincinnati, and Columbus, Ohio filed a joint lawsuit in a Maryland federal court Thursday, laying out the administrative actions Trump has used to negatively impact the Affordable Care Act. This includes shortening the sign-up period, cutting funding for outreach, and expanding insurance options that don’t comply with ACA standards, The Hill reports.
The latest attempt to damage Obamacare came Wednesday, when the White House announced offerings of short-term health care plans. These plans look appealing because they’re less expensive than Obamacare, but they cover fewer medical services and charge higher rates for those with pre-existing conditions.
The lawsuit against the Trump administration points to how the executive changes have cost the cities by leading to more uninsured patients seeking care and more city-funded ambulance transports. According to NBC News, 3 million fewer people had health insurance in 2017 compared to the year prior, and city-subsidized health centers in Columbus saw almost 3,000 more uninsured patients.
“President Trump and his Administration are waging a relentless campaign to sabotage and, ultimately, to nullify the law,” stated the plaintiffs in court filings. “All Americans are, quite literally, paying the price.”