The filing assures renewedattention to President Donald Trump's position that the ACA shouldbe eliminated, including its subsidies and popular rules banninginsurers from charging more to people with pre-existingconditions.

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The Trump administration is hardening its legal position towardObamacare, arguing now the entire law is unconstitutional in ashift that promises to bring the issue to the forefront of the 2020election campaign.

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The position is a change for the Justice Department after itargued last year that large parts of the 2010 law — but not all ofit — should be struck in the case Texas v. U.S., which is pendingbefore the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals. A trial court judgesided with Texas and voided the law in a December ruling. TheJustice Department now says that the entire law, enacted underPresident Barack Obama, should be thrown out.

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Related: The dismantling of the ACA: An (updated)timeline

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The filing assures renewed attention to President Donald Trump'sposition that the Affordable Care Act, known as Obamacare, shouldbe eliminated, including its subsidies and popular rules banninginsurers from charging more to people with pre-existingconditions.

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Trump's move, which could prove to be a gift for Democrats,prompted a swift response from House Speaker Nancy Pelosi. “Tonightin federal court, the Trump administration decided not only to tryto destroy protections for Americans living with pre-existingconditions, but to declare all-out war on the health care of theAmerican people,” she said in a statement.

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Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, a New York Democrat, alsoweighed in, claiming on Twitter that the Trump administration wasfocusing on “taking away your health care.”

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The debate over the ACA, which Republicans tried unsuccessfullyto repeal in 2017, caused heartburn for the party in the 2018midterm elections and was a focal point for Democrats on thecampaign trail.

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Democratic strategist and campaign veteran Jesse Ferguson saidTrump's party “lost the midterms” as a result of its position onhealth care, but “he seems determined to put his hand on that hotstove again and again.”

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Exit polls published by CNN found that health care was the topissue for 2018 voters in House elections across the country. The 41percent who cited it preferred Democratic candidates overRepublicans by a jarring margin of 75 to 23 percent.

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Yet it's an issue Democrats have struggled to stay focused onafter taking the House in January and effectively neutering theRepublican threat to repeal the 2010 law. The GOP had tried toundermine and undo the Affordable Care Act almost from the momentObama signed it. Trump's vow to repeal the law was a centralpromise of his 2016 campaign.

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“If the Trump Administration gets its way, millions of peoplewill be stripped of their health insurance. It would devastateAmericans across the country,” Representative Joaquin Castro, aTexas Democrat, said late Monday night.

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Tom Perez, chairman of the Democratic National Committee, saidin a statement issued Tuesday that the filing fits with thedecade-long goal of overturning the law by Republicans and nowTrump. “This filing moves them one step closer to throwing thefinancial security and peace of mind of millions — not to mentionone of the largest sectors of our economy –into a tailspin,” hesaid.

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Texas and other states that brought the lawsuit assert thatbecause Congress in 2017 zeroed out the tax penalty for violatingObamacare's individual mandate to buy insurance, the provision isno longer constitutional, and that the rest of the law is“inseverable” from it and “therefore invalid.”

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In the filing with the Fifth Circuit dated Monday, the JusticeDepartment wrote that it had “determined that the district court'sjudgment should be affirmed. Because the United States is noturging that any portion of the district court's judgment bereversed, the government intends to file a brief on the appellees'schedule.”

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The Justice Department filing came just as Trump was taking avictory lap after Special Counsel Robert Mueller's probe didn'tfind evidence that the president's campaign conspired with Russiansto manipulate the 2016 election, according to a summary of thereport by Attorney General William Barr.

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