Thursday, March 6, 2014

ObamaCare's Biggest Obstructionist

When will these efforts to obstruct the full implementation of the Affordable Care Act finally end?  It was bad enough that 30-million people "desperate" to buy health insurance had to wait three years after the ACA was passed to finally have the "individual mandate" requiring coverage go into effect.  Then, those who worked for companies with between 50 and 100-employees saw the "employer mandate" get pushed back another year from its original implementation date.  To add insult to injury, no effort was made to guarantee that the national health insurance exchange website would work properly when it went online--even after three years of preparation.  Then, those "trapped" in health insurance plans that don't even meet the minimum standards of coverage required by the ACA were made to keep them for another year.  Then the deadline for the "individual mandate" was pushed back another three months.  And now, those "trapped" in existing health insurance plans that don't even meet the minimum standards of coverage required by the ACA are made to keep them until 2016.

And who is leading this effort to block the will of Congress and the federal laws that it passed?  Why it is none other than the Affordable Care Act's architect and biggest champion: President Barack Obama.  On Wednesday, the President extended the effort to put off his "If you like your plan, you can keep it" Lie of the Year until 2016--even though Congress did not take a single vote to amend the law that it passed which required those plans to be cancelled by the start of this year.  It also extends the President's order from late last year that insurance companies could re-instate those policies--again without Congressional amendment of its previously approved law--after many of those customers had already received their cancellation notices and insurance companies had not done actuarial studies on continuing those policies.

You may notice a pattern in the dates that are selected for the eventual (but likely to be delayed again) implementation deadlines--each time they push the most unpopular provisions of the ACA beyond another election cycle.  The ACA individual mandate was conveniently placed well beyond President Obama's 2012 re-election campaign.  So were most of the new taxes and fees contained in the ACA to pay for the new law.  The "employer mandate" was pushed back 2015 so as to prevent increased unemployment heading into the 2014 mid-term election cycle.  And now the "If you like your plan, you can keep your plan" CYA move will run until 2016, so Democrats don't have to worry about 1.5-million angry voters headling to the polls with cancellation notices in their pockets.

So the next time you hear an MSNBC talking head, or a Democratic candidate for office or a "community organizer" complain about Republican efforts to derail the Affordable Care Act remember, the GOP is doing nothing but talking--President Obama is the one taking all of the action.

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