White House Press Secretary Jay Carney said delaying the mandate until 2015 gives businesses “flexibility” to prepare for the full implementation of the law.
“This was the law. How can they change the law?” said Democratic Sen. Tom Harkin, according to The New York Times.
Carney was asked on Wednesday for his response to Harkin suggesting that Obama lacks the authority to halt provisions of the law.
“The fact of the matter is this is not unusual, and it is done — it is — it is evidence of the kind of flexibility and deference to the concerns and interests of, in this case, a small percentage of American businesses with more than 50 employees that you would think Republicans would support, because you know and I know that their concern is not that we delayed the implementation of an aspect of this law, one provision of it; it’s that they want to try everything they can to undermine the implementation of this law,” Carney said.
“People who suggest that there’s anything unusual about the delaying of a deadline in the implementation of a complex and comprehensive law are, you know, deliberately sticking their heads in the sand or are just willfully ignorant about past precedent. It’s just not — it’s not serious.”