- The Trump administration is supporting a lawsuit asking the courts to throw out the Affordable Care Act, even though the White House has no concrete replacement for the Obama-era healthcare law.
- President Donald Trump has repeatedly promised a backup plan but hasn’t unveiled a detailed proposal. His domestic policy chief, Brooke Rollins, said the White House was still working on one.
- “Obviously if the Affordable Care Act is struck down, we will be ready,” Rollins told Insider in an exclusive interview last week. “If it is not, then we’re going to continue to improve the current system.”
- The Supreme Court is expected to hear arguments next month in the ACA case that was initiated by the conservative Texas Public Policy Foundation, which Rollins once oversaw.
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The White House’s policy shop lacks a clear replacement plan for the Affordable Care Act if the Supreme Court throws out the healthcare law.
Brooke Rollins, the acting director of the Domestic Policy Council at the White House, told Insider in an exclusive interview last week that a backup plan was “being worked on” but indicated that administration officials hadn’t settled on a solution.
“Obviously if the Affordable Care Act is struck down, we will be ready,” she said. “If it is not, then we’re going to continue to improve the current system.”
The Supreme Court will hear a challenge to the ACA a week after the November 3 election. The Trump administration argues the entire law, which was signed by President Barack Obama, should be wiped out, which would threaten coverage for 20 million people.
Democrats, including Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden, have focused on raising alarm about the lawsuit in the weeks leading up to the election and as Senate Republicans rush to confirm the third new conservative Supreme Court justice of the Trump era.
They say President Donald Trump’s Supreme Court pick, Judge Amy Coney Barrett, could be the deciding vote to strike down the law, even as the US continues to battle the coronavirus pandemic. Senate Republicans opened confirmation hearings Monday on Barrett’s nomination and want to hold a final floor vote on her lifetime appointment before Election Day.
Rollins told Insider that striking down the law would be “the right way” to go. “We not only think it was unconstitutional but that it hasn’t worked as promised,” she said.
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‘All to be worked out’
Before she joined the White House Office of American Innovation in 2018, Rollins was the president and CEO of the Texas Public Policy Foundation, a powerful conservative organization that was behind the ACA lawsuit that’s now before the Supreme Court. The think tank has pushed for states to take the lead in setting up their own healthcare plans.
Rollins has overseen the Domestic Policy Council since May. The office operates largely behind the scenes but