Patterico's Pontifications


Does the Law Require Obama to Collect the Employer Mandate in 2014 or Not?

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 7:40 am

Increasingly, these days, it’s impossible to get even the simplest of facts by reading media pieces. For example, does the Obamacare law require the employer mandate to begin in 2014 or not?

Michael McConnell in the Wall Street Journal:

The employer mandate in the Affordable Care Act contains no provision allowing the president to suspend, delay or repeal it. Section 1513(d) states in no uncertain terms that “The amendments made by this section shall apply to months beginning after December 31, 2013.” Imagine the outcry if Mitt Romney had been elected president and simply refused to enforce the whole of ObamaCare.

I started to pen a similar about the rule of law the other day, in this post, and then noticed this passage from this article:

The 2010 Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act allows the Obama administration to set the starting date for the employer coverage reporting requirement that’s the linchpin of the mandate. The administration had not yet announced a date, one of the officials said. Still, enforcement of the mandate had been widely expected to begin in 2014, the official said.

Again, people are entitled to their own opinions, but what are the damned facts?

It would not surprise me in the least if McConnell is right, but I would like to know.

If he is right, by the way, it’s not the first time the law has been ignored:

This is not the first time Mr. Obama has suspended the operation of statutes by executive decree, but it is the most barefaced. In June of last year, for example, the administration stopped initiating deportation proceedings against some 800,000 illegal immigrants who came to the U.S. before age 16, lived here at least five years, and met a variety of other criteria. This was after Congress refused to enact the Dream Act, which would have allowed these individuals to stay in accordance with these conditions. Earlier in 2012, the president effectively replaced congressional requirements governing state compliance under the No Child Left Behind Act with new ones crafted by his administration.

Your mission as readers is to find an authoritative answer to this question. Behold the power of distributed intelligence! Go!

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