The Treasury Department recently announced that it would delay implementation of Obama Care’s highly controversial “employer mandate” which, by law, was supposed to go into effect in 2014. Businesses and insurance companies will now have another year to implement it because, as the Treasury Department put it, the government listened to concerns that there was not enough time for companies to prepare and adjust.
This seems, however, to be nothing short of a political move by the President. You will not see his fingerprints on it. But there is no way the Secretary of the Treasury – or anyone working for the Secretary – made this decision without being directed to do so by the President. Such a move would spell the end of that person or persons in what is President Obama’s Chicago style politics. When one weighs the 2014 mid-term elections against the continued lack of popularity of the signature piece of Democrat legislation in the last 4-6 years, there is no doubt the President doesn’t want people to feel the real impact (which he knows will be painful and even more unpopular) until after the mid-terms.
Based on a story that surfaced today, Republicans seem all too willing to play along. They may have also unwittingly given the President the chance to argue that the Republicans actually support the legislation, or worse, want it implemented. Certain members of the House are questioning whether the President and his Treasury Department can simply ignore the law by postponing a date set firm in the legislation. To even suggest this is unwise.
Any delay in implementation is a good thing for America and Republicans. The further implemented and entrenched the law becomes, the harder it becomes to repeal. In addition, if Republicans make it a point to say they disagree that the timeline on implementation can be ignored, the President will undoubtedly “play dumb” and encourage voters to blame Republicans for insisting that the “employer mandate” be followed. And just like that, it will be argued that Republicans wanted Obama Care and are responsible for it.
Republican leadership should stifle this effort as soon as possible and consider it a win. Rule number 1: when you are winning the debate, don’t help the other side. Obama Care is crumbling under its own weight. Those on the right shouldn’t save it with their own actions now.