Barack Obama is continuing to flout the law once again. Acting without the consent of Congress, the President has now delayed the employer mandate that Congress approved for the Affordable Care Act, while also stipulating that employers must justify their hiring and firing decisions to the IRS in order to receive this delay. Congress’ passing of the Affordable Care Act included a provision which said that companies with more than 50 full-time employees must provide “minimum essential coverage” starting on Jan. 1, 2014 or pay a fine.
However, Obama didn’t consult congress in announcing that this minimum coverage could be delayed until 2016, after the mid-term elections. His new mandate applies to employees with 50-99 workers, while those with over 100 workers only need to compensate 70 percent of them until 2015. He also said that companies may not fire people in order to drop below 100 workers, which essentially means that employers must now explain their staffing decisions to the IRS.
“If you have 101 employees and you lay off two people (to get into the 50- to 99-employee category), you have to tell Big Brother why you did it. And you have to justify it. I mean, that is Orwellian,” said Marc Thiessen of the American Enterprise Institute. “The government creates a false incentive to lay off workers and then punishes you on pain of perjury, a criminal offense, for doing what the incentive leads to you to do…I mean, it is just insane.”
If the IRS “approves” the firing decisions made by an employer, they will still be eligible for the relief. It’s still unclear whether the approval will be made by a group within the IRS or individual employees.