Does Kathleen Sebelius have any idea what the requirements of Obamacare are? Apparently not.
As a member of a United Methodist congregation, I take a special interest in what the elites of the church are up to. In the past, I have been really critical of their policies and beliefs. So once again, I am must call out more nonsense coming from the UMC.
Refresher: Remember when Nancy Pelosi said this?
Apparently, the United Methodist Church was a part of the whole "let's pass Obamacare and figure it all out later" crowd. Unfortunately for them, it might wind up costing them....
When Obamacare became law, the church elites were joyous. The president of the of the Council of Bishops, Gregory Palmer "rejoiced" when Obamacare passed. Jim Winkler, the radical left-wing chief executive of the United Methodist Board of Church and Society, had this to say:
"For decades, the General Board of Church and Society has worked alongside thousands of United Methodists to achieve health care for all in the U.S.,"........."This vote brings us closer to that reality."
Heck even Nancy Pelosi had the entire UMC Board of Church and Society listed on her website as a group supporting the healthcare overhaul.Well, that was then. This is now. In an article posted on the UMC's website on September 24th, the UMC now wants an Obamacare "fix" for them:
The United Methodist health benefits agency wants Congress to pass a fix to the U.S. health care legislation commonly called Obamacare.
I'll be honest. It is really, really, hard for me to feel sorry for these people. The UMC made its bed. Let it lay in it.
It was so important to pass Obamacare. It just had to be done and it had to be done fast. No one knew what was in it. No one knew what all implications there would be. Not a single person knew. Not Obama, not Harry Reid, not Nancy Pelosi, not any of the idiots who voted for it, not Jim Winkler and not Gregory Palmer.
Yet, they were so happy! And now look at what is happening. The very law that they "rejoiced" when passed is getting ready to screw them. So what do they do? Yell and scream and demand that it be "fixed" for them. What about the rest of us? What about all the people that will lose their insurance? What about all the people who is having their hours cut? Is the UMC standing up for these people? No, no and no.
Awaiting me in my inbox tonight was an email from the junior Senator from Tennessee, Bob Corker. He attempts to justify his vote for funding Obamacare and it makes me sick. Here is his email:
I wanted to take the opportunity to share my position during what has been a confusing debate on the Senate floor over the last few days. Like you, I am concerned about the negative effects the President's health care reform law is having on our state, our country, and future generations. I have continued to oppose Obamacare at every turn, including efforts to repeal and defund it.
Today, I voted in support of advancing the House continuing resolution that would permanently defund Obamacare while funding the federal government. After the defunding provision in the bill was struck by an amendment that I opposed, I voted against passage of the amended bill. The bill, nonetheless, passed the Senate with only Democratic votes, and now moves back to the House. In the House, Republicans have the majority and can make other good policy changes that continue the fight against Obamacare. I hope the House can send something back to the Senate that will pass both chambers.
Some have suggested that it would be better to shut down the government rather than accept a bill that lacks the Obamacare defunding provision. But this would be self-defeating: a shutdown would not prevent Obamacare's implementation because the funding for it is almost entirely mandatory, meaning that it occurs regardless of a shutdown. This tactic would only divert attention from the cascading reports of the very real consequences of the law for individuals, families and American businesses.
This doesn't mean we say "game over." It means we work toward actual solutions that have a possibility of becoming a reality. I look forward to the Senate taking up the bill again after the House improves it.
Does he think we are stupid? Let's review:
I have continued to oppose Obamacare at every turn
This is an outright lie. Bob Corker did NOT oppose Obamacare "at every turn." If he truly opposed Obamacare at every turn he would have voted AGAINST cloture, which leads us to....
After the defunding provision in the bill was struck by an amendment that I opposed, I voted against passage of the amended bill. The bill, nonetheless, passed the Senate with only Democratic votes, and now moves back to the House
No crap Corker! This is exactly why you should NOT HAVE VOTED FOR CLOTURE! The Cruz/Lee coalition said this would happen and anyone with two brain cells to rub together knew the Democrats would do this. If Corker and the other traitors would have voted against cloture, the Democrats could have never proposed and then eventually passed the amendment that funded Obamacare! Corker played parliamentary games which lead to funding Obamacare. Now, he wants us to believe that he fought against funding Obamacare when it was funded BECAUSE of his vote for cloture or as he puts it, he "voted in support of advancing the House continuing resolution that would permanently defund Obamacare. "
Some have suggested that it would be better to shut down the government rather than accept a bill that lacks the Obamacare defunding provision. But this would be self-defeating
And here we have it. Corker is admitting his cowardice. He is so afraid of a government shutdown that he voted to fund Obamacare. We have a monstrous piece of legislation waiting to unleash all sorts of havoc on the American people and Bob Corker backs down from defunding it because why? A national park might close for a day or two? Pathetic.
Bottom line: Obamacare was funded in the Senate today because of Bob Corker. No amount of spinning on his part will change this.
In states that setup their own exchanges, businesses with 50 or more full-time employees will be penalized financially for not complying with the insurance requirements. Obamacare defines "full-time" as anyone who works 30 or more hours per week. So, to avoid being penalized, employers will undoubtedly cut enough workers' hours under 30 so they will not be considered full-time and therefore will be under the 50 full-time worker threshold so their business will not be subjected to the penalty.
However, it is not that simple. You see, part-time employees can count toward the 50 full-time employees limit. According to the Congressional Research Service:
"The number of full-time employees excludes those full-time seasonal employees who work for less than 120 days during the year. The hours worked by part-time employees (i.e., those working less than 30 hours per week) are included in the calculation of a large employer, on a monthly basis, by taking their total number of monthly hours worked divided by 120."
The CRS even provides a nice example:
"For example, a firm has 35 full-time employees (30+ hours). In addition, the firm has 20 part-time employees who all work 24 hours per week (96 hours per month). These part-time employees’ hours would be treated as equivalent to 16 full-time employees, based on the following calculation:
20 employees x 96 hours / 120 = 1920 / 120 = 16"
Got that? In the example above, this firm would be considered to have more than 50 full-time employees because of the way that part-time employees are counted.
Businesses should be wary of this. Part-time workers do count when determining if an employer is considered "large."
Funny. It's almost as if Obamacare is designed to force people out of work. But that could never be the case.
By now much has been written and said about the Supreme Court upholding Obamacare but I'm still going to throw my two cents worth out there
Instead of focusing on this decision from a political perspective, I want to focus on it from a Constitutional perspective. How did the Justices reach the decision that the penalty for not purchasing health insurance was Constitutional?
(WARNING: The following information might cause uncontrollable laughing and/or crying, face-palming, and/or fits of rage)
For the logic and arguments used in the ruling, I turned to the Chicago-Kent University's Supreme Court Media website, Oyez.org. Link here.
The High Court was faced with four questions, but I am only going to focus on two:
Here is where the legal gymnastics begin and the Constitution and common sense end. The first question is answered:
"The justices unanimously agreed that the Anti-Injunction Act did not bar the suit. Congress did not intend that the payment for non-compliance with the Individual Mandate be a tax for purposes of the Anti-Injunction Act."
Ok. So, the Court unanimously said that the penalty for not complying with the Individual Mandate was not a tax based on Congress "not intending" it to be. Congress could have said that it was a tax, but they did not. Therefore, the Court reasoned, that the Anti-Injunction Act did not come into play because the penalty is not a tax.
Let's stop right here. After reading this, you would think that the second question could now be answered. If Congress did not declare the penalty as a tax, then Congress does not have the authority under Article 1, Section 8 of the Constitution to enact the Individual Mandate. How did the Court respond?
"Chief Justice Roberts, joined by Justices Ginsburg, Breyer, Sotomayor, and Kagan, concluded that the Individual Mandate penalty is a tax for the purposes of the Constitution's Taxing and Spending Clause and is a valid exercise of Congressional authority."
Confused? In a matter of moments, the Court contradicted itself. Now they are claiming that it IS a tax and is justified under the Constitution's Taxing and Spending Clause. Riiiight............ Let's put it in even more simplistic terms so the Democrats can understand:
The Obamacare penalty is not a tax for purposes of the Anti-Injunction Act.
The Obamacare penalty is a tax and is a valid under the Constitution's Taxing and Spending Clause.
I could see Ginsburg, Breyer, Sotomayor and Kagan making an absurd claim like this. After all, they are radical leftist judicial activists with no respect for our Constitution or rule of law. But John Roberts? What the hell was he thinking?
The dissenting Justices pointed out the flaw in this thinking.
"As part of a jointly written dissenting opinion, Justices Antonin Scalia, Anthony Kennedy, Clarence Thomas, and Samuel Alito disagreed, arguing that because Congress characterized the payment as a penalty, to instead characterize it as a tax would amount to rewriting the Act."
Hmmmmm. Congress did not characterize the payment as a tax. Congress. Did. Not. Characterize. The. Payment. As. A. Tax. Where have I heard that before? Oh yeah, from the same people who said the penalty IS a tax!
This begs the question: Why didn't the five anti-Constitutionalist Justices declare it a tax it when determining if the Obamacare challengers had standing under the Anti-Injunction Act? The challenge would have ended there and Obamacare would have been upheld. My theory is that they wanted/had to get to the second question. They wanted so badly to set the precedent that Congress has the authority to tax inactivity, they were willing to make idiots of themselves to do so. The Anti-Injunction Act had to be gotten around in order to get to what they really wanted to rule on. What better way do this than to simply say that it's not a tax and therefore the Anti-Injunction Act doesn't apply?
One of the main selling points that Obamacare proponents used was that kids could stay on their parent's health insurance plan until they were 26. Remeber this rhetoric? As with all things Democrat, the rhetoric never matches up to realtiy. The language they use is very deceiving.
In this case, Democrats use such words and phrases as "able to stay," "can stay," and "could stay." These words all imply that it is voluntary. Kids can stay on their parents plan if they want to and parents can keep them on their plan if they want to. But this isn't what Obamacare does. What they should say is that parents cannot drop them until they cross the age threshold of 26. There is a difference here and a very important one at that.
Now a story: My brother became a city police officer several months ago. Before he became an officer, he was covered under my parents' policy. Once he became an cop, his health insurance plan was provided by the city in which he was employed. So now what happens to his coverage under my parents' plan? Well, logic would say that since he is covered by his employer, my parents would no longer have to have him on their plan right? Wrong. My parents' insurer said that because of Obamacare, they could not take him off their plan because he is under 26 EVEN THOUGH he is covered by his employer. So my parents are now forced to pay for a child's health insurance when that child is covered by his employer's plan!
I haven't heard about this happening before. I assumed that once a child receives health insurance elsewhere, they could be dropped from their parents' plan but apparently not. Pelosi was right. We are finding more and more out about the bill after it is passed.
Constitutional conservative and free-market defender blogging about national and Tennessee politics