The PJ Tatler

Wait -- Isn't Obama Already Defunding Obamacare On His Own?

So this is floating around on Facebook. I picked it up from my friend Katrina Pierson’s page.


So there’s all those exceptions. The one at the end, which includes all the union and corporate carve-outs, is a biggie when you add in the delayed employer mandate. That’s one of the main mechanisms by which the hideous law is supposed to be funded. You get to be one of the others, via the individual mandate.

This week, news broke that not only do you not get any delay in funding this law unless you’re connected to Big Labor or work for a connecte corporation, you don’t get a cap on how much you may have to spend out of pocket on health care. There’s supposed to be a cap. But by royal decree of His Majesty King Putt, ya don’t get one until 2015.

The limit on out-of-pocket costs, including deductibles and co-payments, was not supposed to exceed $6,350 for an individual and $12,700 for a family. But under a little-noticed ruling, federal officials have granted a one-year grace period to some insurers, allowing them to set higher limits, or no limit at all on some costs, in 2014.

The grace period has been outlined on the Labor Department’s Web site since February, but was obscured in a maze of legal and bureaucratic language that went largely unnoticed. When asked in recent days about the language — which appeared as an answer to one of 137 “frequently asked questions about Affordable Care Act implementation” — department officials confirmed the policy.

The whole law is a mess of legal and bureaucratic language, but can’t Republicans clear things up with a simple message that goes something like this?

President Obama keeps threatening to shut the government down unless Congress funds his unpopular law. But he keeps defunding his own law by delaying parts of it. He’s unwilling to admit the obvious, which is that his law is a mess that’s killing jobs and hurting people’s health insurance. And he isn’t even funding it like he said he would. The whole thing just needs to be defunded now, before it’s too late, so we can start over and get a bipartisan solution.

The media likes bipartisan solutions, right?

It needs a little simplifying and a populist touch, but the basic argument can be that Obama keeps defunding his own law every time there’s a delay on anything.