Gov. Edwards blasts AG Jeff Landry over pre-existing conditions

Photo Courtesy: Marie Constantin / MGN Online / Louisiana Office of the Attorney General

BATON ROUGE - Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards is taking Attorney General Jeff Landry to task over health care in Louisiana. The governor says Landry's actions and lack of a plan are threatening the health care of 849,000 Louisianans with pre-existing conditions.

During an interview on CNN on Monday, Landry talked about entering the state of Louisiana into a nationwide lawsuit that eliminates health care protections for people with pre-existing conditions. But when talking about his decision, Landry said he had no plan in place to make sure people in Louisiana won't lose their health care if he wins. Instead, when asked how these 849,000 people would be protected, he said it would be a debate for the legislature. He also speculated that talking away the requirement that insurers cover people with pre-existing would increase competition among insurers and drive down premiums.

You can watch the interview here:

After the interview, the Governor's Office released the following statement:

“In Louisiana, 849,000 people have a pre-existing condition that could lead to an insurance company denying them healthcare if Attorney General Jeff Landry is successful in his latest lawsuit. It’s deeply disturbing that he has committed the state to this effort without consulting anyone and even worse, without having a plan in place to ensure these individuals do not lose their health care. Entering into this lawsuit should not be an impulse decision. It requires thoughtful consideration of the repercussions to the people of Louisiana. After seeing the attorney general’s interview on CNN this morning, it’s clear he did not think this through. Everyone acknowledges the Affordable Care Act (ACA) has flaws, and we should be working together to fix what’s broken. Protecting coverage for people with pre-existing conditions is one area where there is broad, bipartisan support. If successful, this lawsuit would cause chaos within the health care system, and the people of Louisiana would be left to pick up the pieces.”