Press Release

AFT President Randi Weingarten on Affordable Care Act Ruling

For Release: 

Saturday, December 15, 2018


Oriana Korin

WASHINGTON—American Federation of Teachers President Randi Weingarten issued the following statement:


“Using last year’s GOP tax law changes to eliminate the Affordable Care Act’s individual mandate as the pretext to gut the entire law drags our healthcare system back to a draconian era where one illness or injury could bankrupt the average American family.


“The ACA isn’t perfect, but it’s the only thing that has protected the 133 million Americans with pre-existing conditions, and that has brought healthcare to the millions of seniors, young people and economically disadvantaged people previously denied it by greedy insurance companies. Without the ACA, those companies are once again free to deny coverage and drive up out-of-pocket expenses; plus, prescription drug costs will rise, and as many as 17 million people could lose their coverage within the next year.


“The midterm elections made clear that voters want healthcare protected, not gutted. Instead, the Republican governors who brought this case—with President Trump’s support—have ignored the will and the needs of the people. They have put millions of American lives on the line. If the rule of law prevails, a higher court will reverse this decision. And if basic humanity prevails, it will be done quickly, in order to give millions of people some peace of mind that an illness or prescription won’t pauperize them.”


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The AFT represents 1.7 million pre-K through 12th-grade teachers; paraprofessionals and other school-related personnel; higher education faculty and professional staff; federal, state and local government employees; nurses and healthcare workers; and early childhood educators.