NASHVILLE, TN — Local pastors and community members held a press conference at Legislative Plaza to respond to the Texas judge’s ruling against the Affordable Care Act (ACA) in Texas v. United States. Faith leaders demanded Attorney General Herbert Slatery withdraw our state from this lawsuit and call on others to do the same.
Members of the Southern Christian Coalition requested to meet with AG Slattery, but his office refused. Instead, his office issued a statement praising the decision and tossed the ball to Congress to find a solution. In fact, Congress has already taken action by passing the Affordable Care Act in 2010.
“The immorality of this lawsuit still stands. It is an affront to our call as a follower of a loving and compromising God. For 30 years before I became a pastor, I practiced nursing. I know what happens when health care coverage is not there,” said Rev. Morgan Gordy of Christ Lutheran Church in Nashville. “I have seen families struggle and lose everything. I have seen people choose to limit their lifespan by not seeking treatment in order to pay their rent. Your action in this lawsuit and the triangulation of the lives of our citizens, putting their well-being at risk, is unconscionable.”
“Attorney General Slatery, Jesus tells us that to whom much is given much is required. What is required of us is that we do justice, seek mercy, and walk humbly with our God. To now know that there has been a judgment upholding the lawsuit is devastating for Tennesseans,” said Minister Kelli X of The Village Church in Nashville. “When we allow political standings to get in the way of the care of our people, we are not doing the work that God has given us. Be a moral agent in this world so that folks can have access to all that is necessary to live fulfilling lives. Let the ACA stand so that people can remain healthy and free and alive.”
For months, the Southern Christian Coalition has pleaded with AG Slatery to withdraw Tennessee from the lawsuit; including delivering over 1,000 letters from Tennesseans who are afraid that their health insurance will be taken away. This judge’s decision, if upheld, will confirm the fears of Tennesseans with pre-existing conditions who will lose access to care. Our faith compels us to care for them, to speak up for those who have no voice.