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Americans express growing concern over Texas ruling on Affordable Care Act

A vast majority said they don't trust the government to protect their health insurance, and reserved most of their criticism for one political party.

Jeff Lagasse, Associate Editor

A new survey of Americans with disabilities and pre-existing conditions has found 84 percent of them fear health insurance companies will discriminate against them following last month's U.S. District Court ruling that the Affordable Care Act is unconstitutional.

The survey was by conducted from Jan. 5-9 by The Mighty, a social media platform for patients and families diagnosed with a disease or health disorder. It tapped 2,700 random users' feelings on the Affordable Care Act, health insurance and which party they believe cares for their needs the most.

IMPACT

Without health insurance, 94 percent of respondents said they would not be able to afford treatment for their condition, or that of their loved ones.

Of those responding, 87 percent said they have a disability or preexisting condition.

Trust in the government was low. A whopping 93 percent said they do not trust the government to protect their health insurance, although one political party in particular drew most of the ire. When asked which party they believed would do a better job of protecting insurance, 75 percent favored Democrats over Republicans.

A slight majority, 54 percent, said the Texas judge's federal ruling would make it less likely to vote for President Trump next year. Just 10 percent said they would be more likely, while 30 percent said it would not affect their decision one way or the other.

THE TREND

U.S. District Court Judge Reed O'Connor said in December that the federal law is unconstitutional without the penalty for the individual mandate, but Democrats have appealed the decision.

Legal experts largely concur that if the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals upholds the decision, the case will likely head to the Supreme Court, potentially giving the matter some added weight in the 2020 presidential election.

But if the appeals court reverses the order, the matter isn't so clear. Some legal experts expect the Justices would turn down the case.

Twitter: @JELagasse

Email the writer: jeff.lagasse@himssmedia.com