With midterm elections shaping up as another disaster for Democrats, President Obama has ordered another delay in the implementation of his signature health law.
And in keeping with his policy and political aims, the president has ordered another helping of dessert before the vegetables are served.
Obama has opted to give employers another year to dump health-insurance for workers before federal penalties built into his 2010 health law go into effect.
This will help keep employment rates more stable as some employers were getting ready to reduce staff or shift workers to part-time status in order to avoid Obamacare penalties. For endangered Senate Democrats who backed the law, like Louisiana’s Mary Landrieu and Arkansas’ Mark Pryor, this is a great reprieve.
The actual economic benefits of the delay are less certain as employers are unlikely to change their long-term strategies based on a one-year delay. But it will certainly reduce the number of layoffs.
And create plenty of new customers for the new subsidized, government-run insurance program set to come online in October.
The law, called “the most complex piece of legislation ever passed by the United States Congress” and “beyond comprehension” by one of its principle architects in the Senate, will lead employers facing penalties to lots of different conclusions about what to do under the new regulations and taxes imposed.
For some, it will be cheaper to pay fines and dump workers onto the government program. For others, it will make more sense to offer compliant plans.
But Obama’s move to delay those penalties certainly provides considerable incentive for some companies to get out of the insurance racket altogether, and do it in a hurry. One can expect plenty of workers to hear unhappy news this fall as human resources departments make announcements that rather than the usual “open enrollment,” there will be a workshop for how to sign up for the Obamacare “insurance exchange.”
This is now the pattern with the law. Democrats acknowledge that the implementation is a “train wreck” but are determined to get as many passengers as possible aboard the doomed locomotive.
Because it’s the only way to get what the Obama Democrats have wanted all along: A government-run system open to all Americans and the eventual demise of the employer-based insurance system that has been the norm since the end of World War II.
If the train wrecks with no one on board, there isn’t much incentive to couple up another locomotive. But, with the help of Hollywood celebrities, librarians, proselytizing school children and paid “navigators,” there will be enough millions of people aboard the Obamacare Express when it runs off the rails, that will forever be afforded passage.