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Top Democrats reacted to the ‘awful’ Obamacare ruling



Democratic lawmakers hit back against a federal judge’s ruling in favor of 19 states that argued several key provisions of the Affordable Care Act, or “Obamacare,” are unconstitutional.

Senate minority leader Chuck Schumer condemned the “awful” ruling and vowed congressional action as soon as possible for an “intervention.”

“We’re going to fight this tooth and nail,” Schumer said on “Meet the Press” Sunday morning. “The first thing we do when we get back there in the Senate is vote to urge an intervention in the case.”

The main provision in question is that of the individual mandate, which requires that everyone must have health insurance.

Schumer continued to suggest he would be pushing for a vote on the case.

“A lot of this depends on congressional intent, so if a majority of the House and majority of the Senate say that this case should be overturned, it’ll have a tremendous effect on the appeal,” Schumer said. “Our first stop is the courts. We believe this should be overturned.”

Democratic whip Sen. Dick Durbin said on ABC’s “This Week” that the ruling “didn’t do the Republican Party any favor,” as it will reawaken pressures for Republican unity behind a new healthcare policy.

“It has to be appealed for sure, but in the meantime the Republicans will once again face the question do you believe we should have health insurance accessible, affordable, and cover those with pre-existing conditions,” Durbin said, pointing to what was cast as voters’ top issue in November’s midterm elections.

Read more: Democrats react with fury after federal judge rules that Obamacare is unconstitutional

Sen. Roy Blunt of Missouri, the incoming Republican Policy Committee chairman, echoed Durbin’s forecast of the decision as potentially setting off a political firestorm, saying on “Meet the Press,” that the judge’s ruling is not as significant as the congressional process for forming and passing health care policy.

“This’ll be another area where health care will be used as a political issue, way beyond one district judge making a ruling that has no immediate impact,” Blunt said.

Republican Sen. Susan Collins dismissed the decision as “far too sweeping” and she believes it “will be overturned on appeal.”

“There’s no reason why the individual mandate provision can’t be struck down and keep all the good provisions of the Affordable Care Act,” Collins said of the bill that Republicans have decried since its 2009 passing, and that she initially voted against but recently voted to save.

“He could have taken a much more surgical approach and just struck down the individual mandate and kept the rest of the law intact,” Collins also said of the judge on ABC’s “This Week.”

President Donald Trump praised the decision the day after its passing, telling reporters Saturday that if the decision is upheld, the administration would be working with Democratic lawmakers to secure “great, great health care for our people.”

“We’ll sit down with the Democrats, if the Supreme Court upholds, we’ll be sitting down with the Democrats and we will get great health care for our people, that’s a repeal and replace,” Trump said. “On the assumption that the Supreme Court upholds, we will get great, great health care for our people.”

The president added: “We’ll have to sit down with the Democrats to do it, but I’m sure they want to do it also.”

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