Letter to William Barr, Attorney Barr - STANDING WITH WORRIED LOCALS WHO HAVE PRE-EXISTING HEALTH CONDITIONS, BRINDISI LAUNCHES NEW PUSH TO DEMAND FEDS DROP LAWSUIT THAT WOULD END HEALTH PROTECTIONS FOR MANY ADULTS & KIDS IN OUR AREA; CONGRESSMAN PERSONALLY PUSHES AG BILL BARR
Dear Attorney General Barr:
I write to urge the Department of Justice to reconsider the Administration's ongoing legal challenge to the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and the Department's support for the plaintiffs' position in California v. Texas. In light of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and the economic crisis that has left millions of Americans out of work, it is dangerous to continue this lawsuit, which threatens our health care system and could undermine critical consumer protections.
In my Congressional District in Upstate New York, an estimated 63,900 people directly rely on the Affordable Care Act for coverage, including those who receive their health care through New York State's Medicaid expansion and those who purchase plans on the individual exchange. Further, every New Yorker who has health coverage benefits from the consumer protections in the ACA, including the current ban stopping insurance companies from discriminating against patients with preexisting conditions or imposing lifetime limits on coverage. About 289,000 of my constituents have some form of preexisting condition, conditions like asthma, diabetes, or even having contracted COVID-19. Their health care and financial security could be at risk should the ACA be overturned by the Supreme Court. We cannot go back to a time when big insurance companies had the power to deny health insurance to Americans with pre-existing conditions or charge so much that coverage was essentially impossible to get.
Instead of working to undermine our health care system and overturn the consumers protections in the ACA, the DOJ should instead move to defend this law in federal court. I believe we must work together to fix our health care system and make the changes needed to improve the ACA, not go back to a time when we had no control over our health care and insurers could deny coverage for preexisting conditions. Thank you for your attention to this important issue and I look forward to your response.