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Manchin hits opponent on ObamaCare lawsuit with new ad

Sen. Joe ManchinJoseph (Joe) ManchinOVERNIGHT ENERGY: Biden EPA asks Justice Dept. to pause defense of Trump-era rules | Company appeals rejection of Pebble Mine | Energy pick Granholm to get hearing Wednesday Nomination hearing for Biden Energy pick Granholm set for Wednesday Bipartisan Senate gang to talk with Biden aide on coronavirus relief MORE (D-W.Va.) has a new ad out hitting his Republican opponent in November's midterm election for supporting a lawsuit that would eliminate ObamaCare’s pre-existing condition protections.

In the ad released Friday, Manchin takes aim at West Virginia Attorney General Patrick Morrisey for backing a lawsuit from conservative states that argues ObamaCare’s protections for people with pre-existing conditions are unconstitutional.

Morrisey signed on to the lawsuit along with 19 other attorneys general.

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The lawsuit argues that since the GOP tax law eliminated the individual mandate penalty, the law’s rules that prohibit insurers from denying people health insurance or charging them higher rates should be found unconstitutional.

Manchin’s ad features Natalie Hardy, a resident of Harper’s Ferry, W.Va., who had a kidney transplant.

“One in three West Virginians has a pre-existing condition,” Hardy says in the ad. “I don’t know how Patrick Morrisey doesn’t understand diabetes, high blood pressure. ... It's wrong for Patrick Morrisey to want to take away coverage from West Virginians like me."

Manchin is a centrist Democrat running for reelection in a state President TrumpDonald TrumpMcCarthy says he told Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene he disagreed with her impeachment articles against Biden Biden, Trudeau agree to meet next month Trump planned to oust acting AG to overturn Georgia election results: report MORE carried by 42 points in the 2016 election. He voted with Democrats against the GOP attempt to repeal parts of ObamaCare last summer.

A spokesman for Morrisey's campaign said the attorney general doesn't believe pre-existing condition protections should be eliminated and called the ad "false."

"There is no debate over coverage for preexisting conditions," Nathan Brand said in a statement. "Attorney General Morrisey believes all West Virginians deserve access to affordable and quality healthcare and that is why we must repeal and replace the disaster of Obamacare. Manchin's support for Obama's government-run healthcare and skyrocketing premiums is proof that he'll put his Washington special interests ahead of the healthcare of West Virginians."

Democrats believe health care is a winning issue for them heading into the midterms, where they hope to win back control of the House and the Senate. They are facing a tough road in the upper chamber, where they have 10 members up for reelection in states that Trump won in 2016.