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Attorney general candidate opposes Wisconsin challenge to Obamacare



A lawsuit aimed at ending the Affordable Care Act has gotten a court hearing this week.

Wisconsin Attorney General Brad Schimel is one of the co-sponsors of the suit and that upsets the Democrat nominated to challenge Schimel in November.

Josh Kaul spoke out Wednesday in La Crosse against Schimel’s effort to dismantle the federal health care plan.

“We just shouldn’t have people who are unable to have access to health care coverage because of pre-existing condition,” Kaul said. “And, we certainly shouldn’t have our attorney general using our tax dollars to fight to take protections away from wisconsinites.”

Kaul added that if a state attorney general files a suit against a law, the AG should ask whether the law is harmful and whether it’s illegal. Schimel claims the Affordable Care Act — also known as Obamacare — is unconstitutional because of a tax penalty included in the law.

Kaul told reporters that Schimel’s lawsuit could take health care coverage away from millions of people. He said if he’s elected, he would fight to expand Medicaid coverage in Wisconsin.

The state is one of 20 suing to end Obamacare. Many people who need medical care don’t want it to go away.

Sue Hessel of La Crosse says the Affordable Care Act has helped cover her medical care for breast cancer, and she worries about what might happen if Obamacare is abolished.

“So, while I am now finally on Medicare, I care about the people who will simply lose their insurance if the Affordable Care Act goes away,” she said.

La Crosse lawmaker Jill Billings also joined Kaul in criticizing the lawsuit. Billings said Schimel’s action, coming eight years after the passage of Obamacare, looks like an election-year tactic.

“I’m disappointed that the attorney general has used fundraising language around this effort of his,” she said. “I believe that this is a political effort.”

A native of Prairie du Chien, Brad graduated from UW - La Crosse and has worked in radio news for more than 30 years, mostly in the La Crosse area. He regularly covers local courts and city and county government. Brad produces the features "Yesterday in La Crosse" and "What's Buried on Brad's Desk." He also writes the website "Triviazoids," which finds odd connections between events that happen on a certain date, and he writes and performs with the local comedy group Heart of La Crosse. Brad been featured on several national TV programs because of his memory skills.

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