Cornyn: Those who have lost employer health care can sign up for ObamaCare

Sen. John CornynJohn CornynGOP chairmen stake out turf in Obama-era probes Cornyn presses DOJ to release results of investigation into Larry Nassar probe Minority caucuses call for quick action on police reform MORE (R-Texas) on Tuesday encouraged Americans who have lost health care coverage during the coronavirus pandemic due to losing their jobs to sign up for ObamaCare, the repeal of which he has long supported.

"The good news is that if you lose your employer-provided coverage, which covers about 180 million Americans, then that is a significant life event, which makes you then eligible to sign up for the Affordable Care Act — and as you know, it has a sliding scale of subsidies up to 400 percent of poverty," Cornyn told PBS Austin in an interview.

Cornyn added: "So that's an option for people. ... The good news is people can find, get coverage under the Affordable Care Act or via Medicaid based on their income."

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The senator, who's been in office since 2002, has voted to block, repeal or defund ObamaCare 20 times, according to the Texas Democratic Party, which is fighting hard against the senator's reelection in November.

Unemployment in the U.S. has skyrocketed during the pandemic, with 20.5 million people losing their jobs in April alone. The unprecedented losses spiked the unemployment rate from 4.4 percent in March to 14.7 percent at the end of April, the highest since the Great Depression.

Texas Democrats applauded Cornyn for encouraging people to sign up for ObamaCare, but called on him to stand in opposition against state Attorney General Ken Paxton (R), who is leading a multistate lawsuit that seeks to repeal the Affordable Care Act.

In March, the Supreme Court agreed to hear the case — most likely in the fall, The Texas Tribune reported.

“Now, Cornyn must decide whether he stands with Texans in need or with Paxton in attempting to repeal Affordable Care. Cornyn can’t have it both ways," Texas Democratic Party communications director Abhi Rahman said in a statement. "The question now becomes, where does Cornyn stand on the Paxton lawsuit to repeal Affordable Care for Texans who have recently lost their job?”