Monday, August 19, 2013

Morgan Griffith: Another Obamacare Delay

From Congressman Morgan Griffith's E-Newsletter, where this update appears below a comment on the NSA scandal...

Yet Another Obamacare Delay
Borrowing from a recent Forbes article, “First, there was the delay of Obamacare’s Medicare cuts until after the election. Then there was the delay of the law’s employer mandate. Then there was the announcement, buried in the Federal Register, that the administration would delay enforcement of a number of key eligibility requirements for the law’s health insurance subsidies, relying on the ‘honor system’ instead. Now comes word that another costly provision of the health law—its caps on out-of-pocket insurance costs—will be delayed for one more year.”
This provision would have limited out-of-pocket costs to $6,350 for individuals and $12,700 for families.  As described by Washington Post columnist Ezra Klein, “when the Obama administration went to implement the rule, it found it wasn’t going to be that easy.”  Therefore, they opted to delay its implementation and announced the delay “in a maze of legal and bureaucratic language that went largely unnoticed,” according to The New York Times’ Robert Pear.  Where they get the authority to change the law repeatedly without Congressional action is a mystery.
From the Forbes article, “According to the Congressional Research Service, as of November 2011, the Obama administration had missed as many as one-third of the deadlines, specified by law, under the Affordable Care Act.”
President Obama and the Democrats in Congress in 2010 drafted Obamacare as they wanted it, building it by stringing together a series of separate and distinct ideas that have been floating around Capitol Hill for decades.  They set the timetables for its implementation without taking the time to figure out if it worked or if the country could really afford it.  The Democrats rammed it through without Republican support and since then have been working on getting it to function. 
Remember former Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi saying that Congress had “to pass the bill so you can find out what's in it?” 
Well, the Democrat-controlled Congress passed the bill, the President signed it, and since then they have not been able to make Obamacare work.  I don’t believe Obamacare was built carefully enough to ever work. 
The President has indicated that Republicans are no longer talking about “repeal and replace.”  He is partly right.  While we hope the Democrat-controlled Senate will realize Obamacare needs to be repealed and replaced before January 2014 when most of the provisions are “supposed” to become law, it is doubtful they will.  So now we are planning for the inevitable.  Obamacare will be implemented.  Instead of “repeal and replace,” we will have to deal with “collapse and replace.”  Whether Obamacare is repealed or it collapses, the plan will go away.  The question is how much harm the President and his allies will do to the country’s health care system in their insistence on clinging to an unworkable program.
The American people deserve a health care system that is affordable, high quality, fair, and that works.
As always, if you have questions, concerns, or comments, feel free to call my Abingdon office at 276-525-1405 or my Christiansburg office at 540-381-5671.  To reach my office by email, please visit my website at"