Pro-Obamacare Groups: Supreme Court Nominee May Gut 2010 Law

Democrats say Americans’ access to Obamacare is at risk with the next Supreme Court justice, though some legal experts say they’re exaggerating the issue to try to defeat President Trump’s eventual nominee.

Senate Minority Leader Charles E. Schumer and his troops don’t have the votes to stop Mr. Trump’s nominee, but they are eager to use the pick for political purposes, hoping to rally liberal voters ahead of November’s elections and perhaps make life uncomfortable for several centrist Republicans.

While abortion and the 1973 Roe v. Wade ruling have taken most of the focus, Democrats insist the next justice could play a deciding role in striking down the Affordable Care Act should another case reach the high court, even though the retiring Justice Anthony M. Kennedy had already voted to strike it down.

Protect Our Care, a pro-Obamacare coalition, released a TV ad on Monday driving home that message.

But Justice Kennedy wasn’t part of the 2012 case majority — the key swing vote in the 2012 Obamacare case was Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr., who sided with the court’s four Democratic-appointed members.

Legal experts doubted a new justice will change that.

Mr. Schumer says Democrats can’t take any chances. The specific question around severability at this juncture in Obamacare’s history hasn’t been tested — so in his view, the chief justice’s ultimate position is as an open question.

His strategy is also just Politics 101 — much as immigration is animating the GOP base, Democrats are fired up over health care heading into November’s elections.

“He is, without question, trying to pull every lever to fire up the Democratic base ahead of the midterm,” said GOP strategist Ford O’Connell. “He’s also, interestingly, trying to turn the heat up on Collins and Murkowski — because if they bless the nominee, this is over.”

Read more from Thomas Howell Jr. at the Washington Times

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