Obama paves the path to removing Obamacare

posted at 4:01 pm on December 7, 2013 by Jazz Shaw

Philip Klein has some interesting observations on the long term effects of Barack Obama’s handling of the, shall we say, shortcomings of the Obamacare roll out. He cites an earlier analysis of his – one from the previous election – where he opined that a hypothetical President Romney would have a hard time actually exempting all of the states from Obamacare until at least 2017.. if it could be done at all. But the recent actions of President Obama may have demonstrated a path by which a truly robust chief executive could cut a few corners and get the job done quick like a bunny.

Though I still believe I was right about what the statute said, as it turns out, I was being old-fashioned by taking the letter of the law so literally.

Having watched President Obama and Secretary of Health and Human Services Kathleen Sebelius over the past several months unilaterally alter or outright ignore major portions of the law, I now believe that a future Republican president would have greater latitude to gut Obamacare than I once thought possible.

The changes instituted by the Obama administration in response to implementation snags have ranged from perfectly legal areas of administrative discretion stemming from the vast regulatory powers granted to the HHS secretary under Obamacare, to more creative interpretations of that discretion, to Obama simply choosing to ignore parts of the law that became inconvenient.

Obama has turned his signature legislative accomplishment into a constantly evolving wikilaw, with editing privileges restricted to himself and a few administration officials.

He’s largely been able to get away with it due to the difficulties posed by gaining standing in court for legal challenges.

The President delayed some portions of the bill. He claimed that he wouldn’t enforce others imposed on the health insurance companies. HHS is now proposing to make new changes to alter a provision of Obamacare known as the “risk corridors” program, channeling more money to insurers who no longer think they can pull a rabbit out of this particular hat. And all of these actions are making changes – either directly or in de facto enforcement – to a piece of legislation passed through Congress and signed by his own hand.

In the old days, you needed to go back to the well and make changes through the legislative process. By Klein’s reckoning, those days are past. Getting the bill through once is sufficient, and after that the Executive Office can just tailor things as needed. Such tailoring could obviously include directing the appropriate offices and functions to simply ignore the whole thing, no? It sort of takes the idea of presidential signing statements to a whole new level. And who would have guessed that Barack Obama would solve this puzzle himself?


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HHS is now proposing to make new changes to alter a provision of Obamacare known as the “risk corridors” program, channeling more money to insurers who no longer think they can pull a rabbit out of this particular hat.

Step two: get the insurers addicted to government money & government micromanaging.
Step three: it makes no sense to have the insurers be quasi-independent entities, let’s just fold them into a government agency. Presto, single payer!

rbj on December 7, 2013 at 4:08 PM

The circle

is complete.

StubbleSpark on December 7, 2013 at 4:09 PM

The bill as it is writtwen CONSTANTLY defers to the HHS for determination. A HHS with a desire to make things right can EASILY gut it.
Dr. Ben Carson for HHS!

michaelo on December 7, 2013 at 4:10 PM

The circle

is complete.

StubbleSpark on December 7, 2013 at 4:09 PM

The circle jerk…

sandee on December 7, 2013 at 4:12 PM

It’s not even that hard. Regardless of the fact that John Roberts perverted one aspect of the law to find that particular aspect Constitutional, the law taken as a whole is brazenly and blatantly UN-Constitutional by any interpretation of the Constitution or its explications. No law may coerce the signing of a contract between unwilling partners, or by definition the contract is void. A President is not legally bound to enforce a law that he believes to be in violation of the Constitution. All he has to do is say “this law is null and void, I will not enforce any aspect of it, and I want a repeal bill on my desk in the morning.” Done.

SteveThomas on December 7, 2013 at 4:12 PM

The circle jerk

is complete.

StubbleSpark on December 7, 2013 at 4:09 PM

FIFY

NapaConservative on December 7, 2013 at 4:13 PM

Heh, sandee :)

NapaConservative on December 7, 2013 at 4:14 PM

Heh, sandee :)

NapaConservative on December 7, 2013 at 4:14 PM

Brilliant minds….

sandee on December 7, 2013 at 4:14 PM

Holding all to the letter of the law except the Executive and the administration is untenable. It tramples not only the constitution, the spirit of the constitution, it nullifies the protections set up by the framers against a dictator occupying the oval office.

The combination of a president with no regard for the law or due process and a supine congress has set the stage for the rise of a dictator. A president who, once elected, would proceed to act in any way that president saw fit without regard for the law, the rights of the citizenry, the treaties this nation has signed, the welfare of our allies, or any other normal restraining factor upon a sitting president. Term limits and fair elections might well be among those laws such a president would simply ignore or nullify.

Before the LEFT applauds Obama for undermining and ignoring the law and the purview of congress, perhaps they should consider that an imperial president can readily become a dictator, regardless of the former party affiliation.

thatsafactjack on December 7, 2013 at 4:21 PM

“Hang the Code Constitution. It’s more of a guideline anyway.” /Paraphrased from “Pirates of the Caribbean”

Bitter Clinger on December 7, 2013 at 4:25 PM

The President delayed some portions of the bill.

Illegally delayed some portions of the bill. IMO, if there is some attempt to make this the norm it will end up as a SCOTUS ruling.

Happy Nomad on December 7, 2013 at 4:25 PM

Obama has, unilaterally and illegally, issued waivers and carve-outs to his clientele. What if a future President decides to issue an Executive Order directing the Internal Revenue Service not to collect taxes from his cronies on Wall Street or in Silicon Valley? What if a future President instructs the EPA to enforce laws against one industry, but not another? What if a future President – say the first Hispanic President of the United States – directs the Department of Justice to only enforce civil rights laws when they favour Latinos? What if the first Muslim President decides to make it a requirement that companies with governmental contracts refrain from charging interest on the accounts of other customers? What if the first woman President directs Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac to give interest-free mortgages to women only regardless of means?

In America, all citizens are supposed to be treated equally under the law and the government is supposed to obey the laws that it imposes on everyone else. Without the rule of law and equal protection under the law, we will become just another corrupt, lawlessness, and bankrupt Banana Republic.

Despite what Richard Nixon said, if it is illegal, when the President does it, it is still unlawful. Being President (or holding any office) does not put one above the law. And, ALL citizens should demand that their elected officials obey the laws and eschew corruption and cronyism. After all, if our leaders don’t have to obey the law, why should we?

Resist We Much on December 7, 2013 at 4:26 PM

Dr. Ben Carson for HHS!

michaelo on December 7, 2013 at 4:10 PM

+1

talkingpoints on December 7, 2013 at 4:29 PM

Resist We Much on December 7, 2013 at 4:26 PM

You meant to say the 2nd muslim president?

VegasRick on December 7, 2013 at 4:31 PM

Maybe it could come down to the courts. Liberal judges would say that Obama’s lawlessness is totally cool, but a conservative president’s actions would be shot down. But who knows.

anotherJoe on December 7, 2013 at 4:37 PM

Frozen In Time: Abandoned East German Ski Resort

Resist We Much on December 7, 2013 at 4:27 PM

Hard to understand why exactly that complex was abandoned. The architecture is clearly pre-war if not 19th century.

Happy Nomad on December 7, 2013 at 4:38 PM

But the recent actions of President Obama may have demonstrated a path by which a truly robust chief executive could cut a few corners and get the job done quick like a bunny.

i.e. Rule by dictatorial whim.

That this sort of insanity is now accepted as reasonable is the clearest indication to any of the doubters that the US is dead and gone and that we have no Rule of Law left. This is what Barky has brought and this is what the gutless, colluding, treasonous Vichy GOP has allowed by not even mentioning the possible impeachment of a dog-eating, America-hating retard who has acted as if he were the reincarnation of Sukarno and treated the Rule of Law as if it were a joke – which it is, now.

Of course, we were able to see this coming when the gutless morons in, what used to be, America were very happy to intentionally ignore the Constitution when Barky was first running (so that no one was offended by asking an Indonesian-raised, half Brit/Kenyan, to actually prove that he was even eligible for the Precedency … which he clearly wasn’t). It was pointed out many times in these very comments that such intentional ignorance of our law would lead to its total collapse, and it has.

Nice to see people cheering the dictator Executive (now accepted) in order to undo a little of the permanent damage done by the affirmative action, 84 IQ third worlder. Yay! We have to make a total mockery of the late Constitution in order to save it … Pathetic.

And who would have guessed that Barack Obama would solve this puzzle himself?

Anyone with a brain. But cheering on the lack of any Rule of Law isn’t very smart.

This is why we need a national divorce. An American Constitutional Republic will not be carried in this American Socialist Superstate. Not now. Not ever. It needs to be totally recreated in a new nation – a nation mostly devoid of the America-hating leftist douchebags and the Vichy Republicans who shill for them. Otherwise, we’re all stuck in this A.S.S. with its Rule by Whim and crushing of the very concept of individual liberty and private property rights.

ThePrimordialOrderedPair on December 7, 2013 at 4:47 PM

After all, if our leaders don’t have to obey the law, why should we?

Resist We Much on December 7, 2013 at 4:26 PM

This can’t be repeated too often.

Aitch748 on December 7, 2013 at 4:49 PM

It appears that the law of unintended consequences will take over for the President who is trying to be too cute by half. He absolutely refuses to deal through the legislative process, my guess is because he doesn’t really understand what it would take to accomplish something the right way.

First things first, let’s get a Republican Senate and House in such majorities as to send a message to Obama and the rest of the amateurs in his administration, then we’ll work on electing a President who will actually deal with this piece of legislation.

bflat879 on December 7, 2013 at 4:49 PM

This ugly soap opera is going to end like a poorly produced sitcom on the Comedy Channel. Cancelled after one season.

FireBlogger on December 7, 2013 at 4:50 PM

right…i can see the RINO party man up for once and face down the barking hyenas aka the leftist press.

No you get David Gregory barking at one of these people and pounding on the table they’ll pee all over themselves

r keller on December 7, 2013 at 4:52 PM

I still say that Obama dis not want health care reform. As a community organizer it’s much easier to whine and complain about status quo than actually do something. Now he owns this cap sandwich and has to deal with the responsibility of actually doing something. It’s much easier to agitate. He’s never had to take the ownership of anything.

jaywemm on December 7, 2013 at 4:53 PM

I’m not liking this article. It reflects too much of the problems that currently plague our nation.

I would prefer a Congress that passed laws without abdicating their responsibility for interpretation and meaningful oversight. I would also prefer a President that actually followed the law – whether s/he agreed with it or not. And more than anything, I would prefer elected officials that were more concerned about the nation – as a whole – than any partisan political agenda.

To do otherwise is to court anarchy . . . or worse.

EdmundBurke247 on December 7, 2013 at 5:00 PM

a path by which a truly robust chief executive

A “truly robust” republican?

Ha ha ha ha ha…haaaaa..! [insert snort]..ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha…ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha…

rrpjr on December 7, 2013 at 5:15 PM

Getting the bill through once is sufficient, and after that the Executive Office can just tailor things as needed. Such tailoring could obviously include directing the appropriate offices and functions to simply ignore the whole thing, no? It sort of takes the idea of presidential signing statements to a whole new level. And who would have guessed that Barack Obama would solve this puzzle himself?

I intended to type things about dick-tatorships and not paying taxes…then I read thatsafactjack’s and RWM’s comments and NO more needed to be said.

Schadenfreude on December 7, 2013 at 5:19 PM

I’ve been thinking for several years now that enough precedence has been set by Oboobi that A true classical liberal conservative needs to do the same and undo all the progressive crap, agencies etc and return those powers to the states and we the people. Hit the ground running but hard and by executive force do a hard reboot within 9 to 12 months such that even if both houses are lost by midterms they couldn’t rebuild humpty dumpty. Such as dismantle the epa, nea hhs and other regulatory agencies and liquidate the assets while giving each employee a year’s severance. Methinks the political outcomes would be similar to Walker vs Wisconsin political machine. The libturds would outrageously howl but many a voter would support the POTUS by not recalling the house and senate. But this scenario would never happen with a RINO at the helm committed to managing the decay and adding more regulations. We need a constitutional conservative willing to lead a re v olution against the political elites by dint of will and communicating with the public.

AH_C on December 7, 2013 at 5:28 PM

Some times, a B+ passes.

percysunshine on December 7, 2013 at 5:28 PM

I thought this was “settled law”. Isn’t that what they keep telling us when a Republican proposal is made to alter the law thought the Congress?

tpitman on December 7, 2013 at 5:32 PM

IMeMine

Schadenfreude on December 7, 2013 at 5:32 PM

Resist We Much on December 7, 2013 at 4:26 PM

Excellent points and examples all.

The bogus ObysmalCare law as it was written and as it’s being executed flies in the face of equal protection under the law.

onlineanalyst on December 7, 2013 at 5:35 PM

Step two: get the insurers addicted to government money & government micromanaging.
Step three: it makes no sense to have the insurers be quasi-independent entities, let’s just fold them into a government agency. Presto, single payer!

rbj on December 7, 2013 at 4:08 PM

Investors, shareholders and boards of directors will not allow this to happen.

Obama is like cheese. He stands alone. Hi-ho-his-derrio-the Cheese-stands-alone.

No credibility left.

Key West Reader on December 7, 2013 at 5:46 PM

Obama, the “Constitutional Scholar” is showing us the Constitution is just a bunch of words on really old paper. The President by oath is supposed to abide by the tenets of the document and respect the boundaries of the three co-equal branches. He’s showing us he can do anything he wants and there isn’t anything anyone can do to him. Boehner and McConnell are proving they don’t have the guts to try to hold him accountable. The tree of liberty will have be watered with the blood of Patriots to return this country to its former greatness. Right now, this country doesn’t deserve that document and our Forefathers would be ashamed of us.

TulsAmerican on December 7, 2013 at 5:48 PM

NUTS!!

canopfor on December 7, 2013 at 5:49 PM

The precedent(s) is set; can’t wait for a Repub to take back the Presidency and enact the same level of executive orders. Oh, wait, the press will only stand for that when it’s a Democrat…

yubley on December 7, 2013 at 5:52 PM

Congressional Delegation Now Expected To Attend Mandela Memorial Service

It occurs to me that the president and the administration isn’t the only person or body in our federal government that is out of control.

Where does John Boehner get off deciding to spend tax payer dollars to send an entire delegation of House members to Mandela’s memorial service, half a world away, simply because they’d like to attend.

I think the attendance by the president and the first lady, the previous president and first lady, and most likely Bill Clinton and his wife, Hillary would be sufficient representation of this nation.

The Executive branch isn’t the only branch of our government in serious need of oversight and change.

thatsafactjack on December 7, 2013 at 5:55 PM

thatsafactjack on December 7, 2013 at 5:55 PM

Really?
That’s all you can bring to the table to gripe about?
Do you realize how much money we could save just by keeping Congress on the road 24/7?

Another Drew on December 7, 2013 at 6:05 PM

Congress ? Who needs no stinkin Congress?
–or Constitution for that matter.

CWchangedhisNicagain on December 7, 2013 at 6:09 PM

Let’s face it, the Constitution is dead.

Seriously.

We will reap the consequences of this over time, and the damage will be fatal to our way of life.

bobcalco on December 7, 2013 at 6:09 PM

Newt would have brought articles of impeachment a long time ago. Boehner is as lame a leader as Obama.

cajunpatriot on December 7, 2013 at 6:19 PM

rrpjr on December 7, 2013 at 5:15 PM

Not to worry your poor brain, dear.

The next President won’t be an R or a D

Just givin you a little heads up.

Key West Reader on December 7, 2013 at 6:24 PM

Newt would have brought articles of impeachment a long time ago. Boehner is as lame a leader as Obama.

cajunpatriot on December 7, 2013 at 6:19 PM

Boehner is one of the progressives. As are 75% of R’s sitting in their “seats”.

They’ll be gone in 2014.

Key West Reader on December 7, 2013 at 6:25 PM

Obama has turned his signature legislative accomplishment into a constantly evolving wikilaw, with editing privileges restricted to himself and a few administration officials.

Great turn of phrase. It is, in fact, constantly evolving, and he feels free to change what the law means whenever it suits him.

Of course, it’s a lot less amusing when you realize just how badly this undermines the Constitutional separation of powers. The whole reason we have this separation of powers is to prevent the person who enforces the laws from being able to just change the laws whenever he sees fit.

One of the interesting things about the old empire of the Medes and the Persians is that, even though the king had absolute power, he was not able to change a law once passed. Effectively, they prevented the king from changing the law whenever he saw fit.

Why should the president have more power than a king?

There Goes the Neighborhood on December 7, 2013 at 6:31 PM

The precedent(s) is set; can’t wait for a Repub to take back the Presidency and enact the same level of executive orders. Oh, wait, the press will only stand for that when it’s a Democrat…

yubley on December 7, 2013 at 5:52 PM

It would certainly serve them right. But let’s face it: this kind of thing would never benefit the Republicans like it has the Democrats. First, the media would never cover for a Republican, as you say. But also, it’s the progressive left that wants an all-powerful president, and has the most to gain from these power grabs. And it’s the progressive left that believes in sidestepping the Constitution, precedent, tradition, separation of powers, and anything else that stands in the way of the progressive utopia.

Since this could never benefit anyone else as much as it has the Democrats, any future Republicans need to a) roll back the damage as much as possible, and b) find a way to prevent it from ever happening again.

There Goes the Neighborhood on December 7, 2013 at 6:37 PM

The Marxist Obama just wants control and to go down in history as the greatest (black) President evah!!!

I don’t think he gives a hoot if people have health insurance or not.

redguy on December 7, 2013 at 6:39 PM

Obama should be tried for treason.

justltl on December 7, 2013 at 6:40 PM

Just givin you a little heads up.

Key West Reader on December 7, 2013 at 6:24 PM

My brain isn’t little, poor or worried. But thanks. And I have no problem with what you prophesy.

rrpjr on December 7, 2013 at 6:55 PM

My brain isn’t little, poor or worried. But thanks. And I have no problem with what you prophesy.

rrpjr on December 7, 2013 at 6:55 PM

Glad to be on the same page with you.

Key West Reader on December 7, 2013 at 7:11 PM

Really?
That’s all you can bring to the table to gripe about?

Another Drew on December 7, 2013 at 6:05 PM

Stand in front of a mirror and say it again.

thatsafactjack on December 7, 2013 at 7:30 PM

Dr. Ben Carson for HHS!

michaelo on December 7, 2013 at 4:10 PM

+1

talkingpoints on December 7, 2013 at 4:29 PM

…got that right!

thatsafactjack on December 7, 2013 at 5:55 PM

…and you …got that right!

KOOLAID2 on December 7, 2013 at 7:43 PM

This A$$hole should be impeached and his staff charged with fraud and deception.

TX-96 on December 7, 2013 at 7:58 PM

…I was being old-fashioned by taking the letter of the law so literally.

.
“Literally” only counts when a non-Democrat is elected to the office of President of the United States.

ExpressoBold on December 7, 2013 at 9:00 PM

He’s largely been able to get away with it due to the difficulties posed by gaining standing in court for legal challenges.

Actually there is more to it than that. Agencies responsible for administrative enforcement are largely staffed by Obama loving Obamatons who agree with whatever President Numbnuts wants.

Difficultas_Est_Imperium on December 7, 2013 at 9:05 PM

The congress has enabled this to happen by not acting to stop or correct it when Obie started changing the law unilaterally.

TfromV on December 7, 2013 at 9:25 PM

I have to disagree with this premise, Jazz.

Because unlike the linguini-spined GOP Establishment, Democrats know how to FIGHT and make NOISE.

God forbid a GOP President doing this while faced with a Democrat House… he or she will be impeached immediately.

And of course you will have the McCain elements coming out and taking positions against their President and talking ad-infinitum about how wrong that President is to take such a step. The media will also hype it unlike their cover-up for Obama and that President will sink like a lead rock in the polls.

The GOP, on the other hand,… (I rest my case).

TheRightMan on December 7, 2013 at 11:30 PM

I don’t disagree that Obama has done any number of things for which impeachment would be a reasonable recourse.

But it is simply stupid to blame the House Republicans for failing to impeach him. Impeachment is merely an indictment, it takes 2/3 of the Senate to convict. We saw under Clinton how a futile attempt backfires politically.

In the end, elections matter. Those who stayed home or voted third party or left the top line blank in 2008 or 2012 because the nominee didn’t meet their personally desired standards are more to blame than elected officials who refuse to waste time on meaningless gestures.

Adjoran on December 8, 2013 at 2:57 AM

In Minnesota they kept counting the votes till they one, give me a break. The fraud is so bad this last election for President that over 100% voted for Obama; In one district it was 158% for Obama. The media is mute along with the GOP. I blame the healthcare tax on the Supreme Court.

mixplix on December 8, 2013 at 4:29 AM

It’s very difficult to undo precedent, and the President has set many terrible ones. Those who believe that some future republican president will undo the damage brought on by this administration are probably kidding themselves.

zoyclem on December 8, 2013 at 7:15 AM

A Republican President will have a field day with all the laws these two scum of the earth lowlifes have written into the already passed by congress law.

tmgrant on December 8, 2013 at 7:43 AM

If this is how our govt is going to be run from now on, SP could really clean house and straighten up DC like a whirlwind. No rules, just right.

Kissmygrits on December 8, 2013 at 9:09 AM

First, Obama care has nothing to do with me except for the Trillions of wasted tax Do$$ars that it has so far cost “We the People”. I do have a few questions about it. First if the Web sight does start to work, even if only poorly Isn’t that now a bad thing for The president since he has wavered delayed and revoked so much of the ACA. How can they spin “even if it works you can’t have it now”. How about the medical insurance portion of my auto insurance policy? Is it going to be canceled soon because it does not meet the ACA minimal requirements? How about the local school system coverage of local school children? Are they going to be canceled because my 9 year old grand son does not have a birth control options.

Oh well with out any proper security systems in place to protect your personal data you are just a fool, on the Obama roles or a Democrat to sign up. No court in this country will enforce any of the laws in the ACA with the history this program has had so far.

jpcpt03 on December 8, 2013 at 11:52 PM