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Schumer and Senate Democrats Oppose Legislation Ensuring Protections for Pre-Existing Conditions

AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta

Senate Democrats voted against legislation on Wednesday night that would guarantee insurance coverage for individuals with pre-existing conditions. The Protect Act, introduced by Senator Thom Tillis (R-NC) and co-sponsored by a host of other GOP Senators, was originally introduced in 2019 and brought back for a procedural vote by Leader McConnell on Wednesday night. 

Senate Republicans put their Democrat colleagues on notice, and on the record opposing protections for healthcare coverage for pre-existing conditions, after Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) forced Republicans to publicly support or oppose the Trump administration’s lawsuit that seeks to overturn the Affordable Care Act (ACA). Democrats consistently claim that Republicans hope to deny coverage to individuals who have pre-existing conditions, but Wednesday night’s vote says otherwise. 

“For the last year and a half since introducing the Protect Act, I have worked to pass this legislation so we can ensure hard working Americans never have to go to bed worried about being denied coverage or treatment if they or their children have a pre-existing condition,” Sen. Tillis said in a release. “Unfortunately, Senate Democrats have continuously chosen to put politics before the American people and make protecting pre-existing conditions a campaign wedge-issue even though it has broad bipartisan support. It’s appalling that at the same time Democrats are lying about Judge Amy Coney Barrett’s record on health care, they refuse to protect people with pre-existing conditions. Their plan couldn’t be clearer: they would rather have a political issue to scare Americans about Judge Barrett’s nomination rather than solve the problem. That’s wrong. North Carolinians and the American people deserve better, and Democrats should be ashamed of themselves for these disgusting political stunts that are putting lives at risk.”

The Protect Act would prohibit discrimination against individuals with pre-existing conditions by insurance companies, and ensure that affordable coverage is available to those individuals. The legislation is a direct rebuke to the exhausted talking point pushed by Democrats for the sake of fear mongering, when they claim that Republicans want to deny individuals with pre-existing conditions insurance coverage.

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