Obamacare

Labor Group Issues Sharply Worded Statement On Obamacare

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credit: Whitehouse.gov

Labor unions haven't exactly warmed to Obamacare recently. Several smaller unions have denounced the law already this year, and criticism from the A.F.L.-C.I.O. has been growing over the summer. As Nick Gillespie noted earlier today, that criticism culminated this week with a sharply worded resolution passed by the group at its convention.

As The Washington Examiner's Sean Higgins notes, the resolution says that Obamacare "should be administered in a manner that preserves the high-quality health coverage multi-employer plans have provided to union families for decades and, if this is not possible, we will demand the ACA be amended by Congress."

It's not quite a call for repeal in the absence of alteration, but it's a rather strong criticism for a group that initially supported the law and is closely linked with the Democratic party. And it was very nearly a declaration that the law should be either changed or repealed.The New York Times reports that after speaking with President Obama about union concerns regarding the health law this summer, A.F.L.-C.I.O. president Richard Trumka agreed to tone down the group's criticism of the law. And as the resolution was being drafted, Mr. Trumka reportedly "made sure to strip out some proposals that called for repealing the legislation."

But as the Times also notes, that's exactly what some other labor bigwigs are calling for in the absence of the changes they want made to the law:

"If the Affordable Care Act is not fixed and it destroys the health and welfare funds that we have fought for and stand for, then I believe it needs to be repealed," said Terence M. O'Sullivan, president of the Laborers' International Union of North America. "We don't want it to be repealed. We want it to be fixed, fixed, fixed.

Good luck with that. Congress isn't likely to pass labor-friendly "fixes" to Obamacare any time soon. And while the White House has reportedly considered pursuing an administrative tweak, it's not clear that the executive branch has the authority to do so without congressional authorization. Now, that hasn't stopped the administration from changing the health law in other ways, but if the administration went ahead with yet another legally dubious change to the law to make life easier for its union allies, it would result in even more controversy and attention. 

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  1. Here is the funniest part of this. The official AFL CIO position is that they want single payer as the long term solution to US health care. But they are now having a fit that their Cadillac plans are being taxed under Obamacare.

    Now I don’t care that they guys managed to get their employers to give them great insurance. Good for them. But what kind of epic cognitive dissonance does it take to love your gold plated insurance and think single payer is the way to go?

    1. They just automatically assume that they’ll have the exact same coverage as now, but it’ll be free.

      1. Exactly.

        I’ve never known unions to think through the long-term consequences of their demands.

    2. It’s a common mentality among lefties; one set of rules for the party, another set of rules for the proles.

    3. “The official AFL CIO position is that they want single payer as the long term solution to US health care. But they are now having a fit that their Cadillac plans are being taxed under Obamacare.”

      Even in politics, sometimes being stupid has it’s disadvantages. Maybe they just assumed that if they support liberal policies they will be exempt from them just like liberal polititions are. Sadly, in the end, they probably will be.

    4. It’s not contradictory.

      In the minds of most progressives, single-payer IS a cadillac plan for everyone.

      They honestly have no concept of the scarcity of resources. I have yet to meet any single-payer advocate who doesn’t think that single-payer means that government pays for all your healthcare needs, without any questions or limits. They assume that it will be paid for by taxing the rich more. They can’t grasp the idea that there are only so many doctors and so many hours in a day. They think the wait lists in Canada are some sort of rare anomaly that is caused by a shortage of certain specialists, not a built in feature of the system.

  2. after speaking with President Obama about union concerns regarding the health law this summer, A.F.L.-C.I.O. president Richard Trumka agreed to tone down the group’s criticism of the law.

    “Of COURSE I love your new suit, sir. It’s beautiful. And completely opaque, I swear.”

    1. Obamas lawyers explained to him the built in loopholes designed for democrat supporters.

  3. …it would result in even more controversy and attention.

    From whom? House Republicans? I don’t really think this is a concern.

    1. My thought exactly. From the chirping crickets maybe?

  4. As The Washington Examiner’s Sean Higgins notes, the resolution says that Obamacare “should be administered in a manner that preserves the high-quality health coverage multi-employer plans have provided to union families for decades and, if this is not possible, we will demand the ACA be amended by Congress.”

    So, high quality healthcare plans for powerful unions, six inch American flags for everyone else?

  5. ‘You messin’ with my free shit, bro?!’

  6. OT, but too good to pass up:

    “We’re diverted totally from what this bill is about. Why? Because the anarchists have taken over,” Reid said on the Senate floor. “They’ve taken over the House and now they’ve taken over the Senate.

    “People who don’t believe in government ? and that’s what the Tea Party is all about ? are winning, and that’s a shame.”

    Anarchy!

    Shut up you old dinosaur, take your graft and corruption money, and crawl under a rock somewhere.

    1. I’d love to have a Pelosi/Reid Tear Cocktail. I imagine it being one of the best drinks on earth.

    2. If you are not a control freak, then you are an anarchist.

      /reid

  7. “You knew I was poison when you picked me up” Seems so appropriate here.

  8. related: Detroit may end health care coverage for retirees under 65, replace it with $125 monthly stipends

    Detroit emergency manager Kevyn Orr is considering a plan to replace current health care benefits for retirees under 65 with a stipend of $125 a month to buy coverage beginning next month from the state’s new health insurance exchange, city officials said on Wednesday.

    The city intends to help those retirees figure out the best health insurance plan offered under the Affordable Care Act, also known as Obamacare. Michigan’s insurance marketplace where the plans will be sold launches Oct. 1 and coverage is effective Jan. 1.

    1. How in the world do statists expect to bailout Detroit’s retirees when the House is controlled by anarchists?

    2. That’s actually an improvement. I’d rather give old people a voucher to buy private insurance than to have it publicly funded.

      It’s still under the fucked up regulations governing the insurance market under the ACA, though.

  9. But shreek is always telling me Obamacare is an evil Republican plan thought up by the Heritage Foundation, perfected by Mitt Romney and forced down Obama’s throat by obstructionist rethuglicans and greedy insurance companies. So, shouldn’t it be okay to criticize it?

  10. Funny, I don’t feel like I’m in power.

    http://thehill.com/blogs/floor…..use-senate

    Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid on Thursday said “anarchists” have taken over Congress.

    Reid (D-Nev.) said Tea Party Republicans are preventing progress on an energy efficiency bill by offering amendments on ObamaCare and other unrelated issues.

    “We’re diverted totally from what this bill is about. Why? Because the anarchists have taken over,” Reid said on the Senate floor. “They’ve taken over the House and now they’ve taken over the Senate.

    “People who don’t believe in government ? and that’s what the Tea Party is all about ? are winning, and that’s a shame.”

    Oh, he means his butthurt caused by political maneuvering well within the rules of the Senate by the opposition is the same as anarchy when he doesn’t get his way. What a whiny bitch. If not funding Obamacare is the same as anarchy then what the hell do you call not even making an attempt to get a budget passed , one of your primary Constitutional duties during the last five years of your leadership, Senator Pussyface?

    1. We are winning!

  11. OT: More dribbling out from the IRS:

    http://www.theblaze.com/storie…..dangerous/

    Newly-released emails between disgraced Internal Revenue Service official Lois Lerner and her staff may contradict earlier claims that the agency’s harsh treatment of conservative groups was not politically motivated.

    One email shows Lerner, then the director of the tax-exempt organizations division, advising her staff in February 2011 that a Tea Party matter is “very dangerous,” and is something “Counsel and [Lerner adviser] Judy Kindell need to be in on.”

    That e-mail alone should get the bitch twenty years in the slammer for the improper use, hell, a grade A on its face constitutional violation, of her authority to persecute perceived political. enemies.

    1. But they didn’t target Tea Party groups. They just hated their guts and thought they were dangerous and harassed the shit out of them. But some lefty group that we can’t name had to answer some questions. So it was totally even handed.

      1. Further in, just wow.

        The emails also reveal that IRS officials were starting to worry about the role outside money would play in elections.

        In an email dated July 10, 2012, then-Lerner adviser Sharon Light sent Lerner an NPR story on how “outside money was making it hard for Democrats to hold their Senate majority,” The Wall Street Journal notes.

        The Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee complained that conservative groups such as Crossroads GPS should be treated as non-tax exempt political committees.

        “Perhaps the FEC will save the day,” Lerner, herself a former FEC official, responded.

        1. Wow is right. The other thing lefties do that drives me nuts is they keep saying this was all low level out of control bureaucrats and not Obama. But then they do nothing to hold these people accountable.

          Lerner was a piece of work and a fanatic and a hack. The irony is that the politicals might not have had anything to do with this. It might have been Lerner really just being an out of control bureaucrat. But since the Dems will never hold anyone on their side accountable for anything, Lerner walks leaving the impression she was acting under orders.

          1. I suspect getting Democrats elected has been a operative goal of an entire elite class in the bureaucracy no matter who sits in the Oval Office. Lerner’s harassment of Ollie North in the early 90s with George H. was still president with questions she posed to get him to reveal political alliances showed she was just tool then of a larger self interested party in the bureaucracy.

          2. It’s nice she’s still recieving a tax-payer funded paycheck every two weeks.

            1. Never forget these scumbags believe that paycheck and fat pension is owed to them, and we should be grateful they only take a third to a half of our wealth, but if they ever decided they want it all, they are well in their rights to take it.

      2. To me, its more proof that belief in the unimpeachable veracity of the government and the mainstream media is the defining characteristic of people who call themselves progressives. Their government classifies the tea party as the enemy and let it be known through NYT, WaPo, NBC, CBS, ABC, even Fox jumped on that at the beginning too, and they progs jump up like a well trained dog and start barking at the guy in the tri-corner hat.

        1. And thanks to this we are going to end up with a country where 48% of the population feels like the government hates them and is out to get them. And since nothing will ever happen because of this, it is just a matter of time before the Republicans start doing the same thing when they take power. I hope they are happy when the IRS becomes the accepted and preferred political weapon of whatever party holds the White House.

          1. The can try, but any political plans they have will be resisted and sabotaged by the bureaucracy, as it has an interest at stake in getting democrats elected as Lerner makes very clear here.

            1. They can try.

              You’re right, typing on a hand held device sucks.

            2. The bureaucracy can gum things up. But any party controlling the white house can use the IRS to do a lot of damage. The bureaucracy likes their pay checks and pensions and bonuses and cushy jobs. They will take orders. Don’t let them fool you.

    2. From the 24/7 newsfeed yesterday was a story on the TIG digging into the IRS audit of Martha Boneta. Lots of incest between the IRS and the control-freaky enviros in Virginia. There’s an obvious lack of restraint by the statists these past few years.

  12. related: Detroit may end health care coverage for retirees under 65, replace it with $125 monthly stipends

    They should issue scrip redeemable at Doctor Nick’s Modern Health Clinic, Barber Shop and Shoe Repair Emporium.

    1. Dr. Nick: Hi everybody!

      Detroit: Hi Dr. Nick!

  13. They are gunning to get subsidies.

    The incentives that apply to employer-based plans also apply to unions. If individuals are purchasing insurance through the exchange they may qualify for subsidies, if they get it from an employer, they don’t. That creates an incentive for employers (and unions) to drop health coverage.
    Of course employers (and unions) already get a tax deduction, for providing coverage, but at some point the subsidies will be worth more than the tax deduction.

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