Treasury: Employers must “self-attest” that ObamaCare not behind staffing decisions – under penalty of perjury

posted at 12:41 pm on February 11, 2014 by Ed Morrissey

Old and busted: Businesses will love ObamaCare for its cost savings in health care! New hotness: Businesses had better not make staffing decisions based on cost savings from ObamaCare-fueled price spikes! After its latest delay in implementing the employer mandate, the Obama administration rebuffed criticisms that the law incentivizes employers to shift to part-time work by announcing the Treasury Inquisition — ahem, excuse me, the Treasury Attestation Department:

The latest announcement comes after the administration heard from businesses about their concerns with the looming ObamaCare rules. However, the change is sure to raise more questions about the health and implementation of the law. Fewer workers getting insurance through their employers could mean more individuals on the ObamaCare exchanges seeking subsidized coverage, increasing the cost to taxpayers.

Some lawmakers, though, have claimed that the mere threat of the employer mandate is causing companies to shed full-time workers in the hope of keeping their staff size below 50 and avoiding the requirement.

Administration officials dispute that this is happening on any large scale. Further, Treasury officials said Monday that businesses will be told to “certify” that they are not shedding full-time workers simply to avoid the mandate. Officials said employers will be told to sign a “self-attestation” on their tax forms affirming this, under penalty of perjury.

Officials stressed that the latest reprieve applies to a relatively small percentage of employers — albeit companies that employ millions of workers.

Er … exactly what gives Treasury the authority to demand that kind of pledge, anyway? The law only mandates that employers provide coverage for full-time employees, a status defined by working 30 or more hours a week. It doesn’t contain any authority for Treasury or anyone else to force current full-time employees to stay in that status, nor for the federal government to dictate ratios of full-time/part-time staff.

Gabriel Malor wondered the same thing:

The Obama administration is big on self-attestation, huh? Just ask the Little Sisters of the Poor. They’ve certainly gotten the “bully” part of the bully pulpit in mind these days at the White House.

This seems an opportune time to revisit F. A. Hayek and The Road to Serfdom about the nature of command economies, and the nature of governments that impose them. Hayek supported social insurance programs, but warned that crafting them or anything else in the nature of a command economy would not just guarantee economic failure, but increasing lawlessness, arbitrariness, and tyranny from the government that imposes it as it gets desperate to avoid failure. That cycle appears to be fast-tracked with ObamaCare at Treasury.

My friend Scott Johnson at Power Line recalls the argument well in a rebuttal of a recent column from E. J. Dionne:

As I say, I guess it’s too difficult to actually read Hayek’s Road to Serfdom, or his more complete Constitution of Liberty, to see what his argument actually was, so easier just to go with Judt’s comic book version instead.  In both of his great books, Hayek endorses the principle of social insurance (and even a mandate for everyone to buy health insurance—egad*), but is concerned with the tendency toward making social insurance programs into redistribution programs.  Wow—crazy stuff, I know.  But you can see that Judt’s formula that Hayek opposed “welfare policies of any sort” is flat wrong.

And is Hayek’s broader point that centralized economic planning would lead to tyrannical government really so far-fetched?  The linchpin of Hayek’s argument was that the plans and desires of the statists would require the undermining of the rule of law, because steadily increasing arbitrary power is necessary for their centralized schemes to work.  I wonder whether Dionne has checked in lately with the Little Sisters of the Poor?  Or has taken notice of the IRS harassment of groups opposed to Obama?  I wonder what he makes of Obama’s unilateral executive decisions simply to suspend parts of the health care law that are politically inconvenient?

As for me, I wonder whether Scott expected his argument to be so very well validated in such a short space of time. Of course, no one expects the Treasury Inquisition …


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Of course, the part that black child libfreeordie doesn’t want to admit is how much lower the crime rate among kids with professional married mothers and fathers with high paying jobs is in the first place.

So that means you believe it is OK to prosecute crimes differently based upon class status. How is that not an aristocracy?

libfreeordie on February 11, 2014 at 3:17 PM

Hey “professor”, you obviously missed the point of the post that you are referring to. I will tell you how us middle and upper-middle class folks keep our kids out of jail. We teach our kids to work hard, be responsible parents, don’t use drugs, and DON’T BREAK THE LAW. I have told my kids that if they land in jail, they stay there – that threat keeps them from getting into trouble in the first place.

If you used your position in the African-American community to propagate these solid middle-class values, you would help to lift your community up. Instead, you poison their brains with that Marxist crap that you teach, and allow the underlying problems to fester like an undrained abscess.

But – returning to the original subject of the thread – it is ironic that you condemn “arisocracy”, when (by his random and probably illegal changes to established law) the president that YOU support is acting like an aristocrat. Remember how a fish rots from the head down…

If you want to end the “Class Priviledge” you need to start with your side. You know – take care of the plank in your own eye, before you worry about the mote in ours…

SubmarineDoc on February 11, 2014 at 6:04 PM

Your Moms calling you.

Bmore on February 11, 2014 at 4:09 PM

Does Mom know that he’s a…Godlesscommie?

Solaratov on February 11, 2014 at 6:06 PM

You’re just mad seeing a beautiful and accomplished black woman in the White House. Deal.

libfreeordie on February 11, 2014 at 10:14 AM

You mean the one that was DISBARRED? Yeah, that’s an accomplishment very few lawyers ever see. And you seriously need to check your vision if you somehow think she is “beautiful”, see Naomi Campbell, Stacey Dash and Hally Berry for proper examples. No woman should ever make her husband look puny.

No wonder EVERY time you idiot open your mouth you keep on proving how stupid you are. And how uneducated.

riddick on February 11, 2014 at 6:16 PM

SubmarineDoc on February 11, 2014 at 6:04 PM

You could not be more right and I agree with all you are saying but unfortunately you are talking to a wall. Someone who is indoctrinated in the mental diease of liberlism have a hard time with facts and history. But I enjoy your smackdown of libnotfreeanddie. Thanks, you made my night start of with a laugh.

One_If_By_Land on February 11, 2014 at 6:26 PM

Solaratov on February 11, 2014 at 6:06 PM

We’ll have to ask when we see her next. I hope for her to have a comical retort. I love the skit so far. ; )

Bmore on February 11, 2014 at 6:27 PM

The latest announcement comes after the administration heard from businesses about their concerns with the looming ObamaCare rules. However, the change is sure to raise more questions about the health and implementation of the law. Fewer workers getting insurance through their employers could mean more individuals on the ObamaCare exchanges seeking subsidized coverage, increasing the cost to taxpayers.

Some lawmakers, though, have claimed that the mere threat of the employer mandate is causing companies to shed full-time workers in the hope of keeping their staff size below 50 and avoiding the requirement.

Administration officials dispute that this is happening on any large scale. Further, Treasury officials said Monday that businesses will be told to “certify” that they are not shedding full-time workers simply to avoid the mandate. Officials said employers will be told to sign a “self-attestation” on their tax forms affirming this, under penalty of perjury.

Officials stressed that the latest reprieve applies to a relatively small percentage of employers — albeit companies that employ millions of workers.

FoxNews.com on February 11, 2014

.
You (expletive) employers better start ‘liquidating’ your private businesses, RIGHT THE HANG NOW !

Anyone whose private business remains solvent and “in the black” by this time next year, will be prosecuted to the highest extent of the law.
.

Nooo body expects the ‘Treasury Attestation’.

listens2glenn on February 11, 2014 at 6:27 PM

What. The. F***.

The FCC Will Begin Investigating Bias In the Media (and By That, They Mean Conservative Bias)

The purpose of the CIN, according to the FCC, is to ferret out information from television and radio broadcasters about “the process by which stories are selected” and how often stations cover “critical information needs,” along with “perceived station bias” and “perceived responsiveness to underserved populations.”

How does the FCC plan to dig up all that information? First, the agency selected eight categories of “critical information” such as the “environment” and “economic opportunities,” that it believes local newscasters should cover. It plans to ask station managers, news directors, journalists, television anchors and on-air reporters to tell the government about their “news philosophy” and how the station ensures that the community gets critical information.

The FCC also wants to wade into office politics. One question for reporters is: “Have you ever suggested coverage of what you consider a story with critical information for your customers that was rejected by management?” Follow-up questions ask for specifics about how editorial discretion is exercised, as well as the reasoning behind the decisions.

Eric in Hollywood on February 11, 2014 at 6:29 PM

onomo on February 11, 2014 at 5:52 PM

I would, over just about any others offered up.

Bmore on February 11, 2014 at 6:29 PM

northdallasthirty on February 11,2014 at 2:25 PM

+ a gozillion

kozanne on February 11, 2014 at 6:37 PM

Don’t lump me in with those guys. I just got here, saw the thread count, knew slave had hi-jacked it. By the way, did you know you were my sock? Lolz!

Bmore on February 11, 2014 at 4:13 PM

What the what?

Midas on February 11, 2014 at 6:37 PM

Eric in Hollywood on February 11, 2014 at 6:29 PM

They will now go from 90% leftist bias to 99%.

Goebbels laughs his dead azz off. They surpassed all his dreams.

Schadenfreude on February 11, 2014 at 6:46 PM

Thank you. I am hopeful you and I might get along well together. Your style is a breath of fresh air here at HA. Normally, (not always but in general), folks from the other side of the isle that come here do so to disrupt and in many instances race bait and such. I always have enjoyed honest discussion of topics and truly enjoy and honest exchange of ideas. It is quite rare here between left and right to have that. At any rate and welcome a board HL! ; )

Bmore on February 11, 2014 at 5:49 PM

+1

Schadenfreude on February 11, 2014 at 7:02 PM

If he ever gets a party affiliation he has my vote.

onomo on February 11, 2014 at 5:52 PM

+200 million sane Americans

Schadenfreude on February 11, 2014 at 7:02 PM

Midas on February 11, 2014 at 6:37 PM

The VJ_Sport fellow suggested me to be your sock. Or vise versa. Hope I got his nom correct. I don’t have the thread handy or I would link it. ; )

Bmore on February 11, 2014 at 7:08 PM

If you want to end the “Class Priviledge” you need to start with your side. You know – take care of the plank in your own eye, before you worry about the mote in ours…

SubmarineDoc on February 11, 2014 at 6:04 PM

First, how cool, your nom/calling/service/profession. Lots to that, but later.

To your comment, the commie fool, erroneously assumed to be in Atlanta, is too busy teaching and writing about class, black and queer, his word, studies. He makes them up too, them ‘studies’.

Propaganda is him, and he ruins the students, the assistant ‘professor’.

At least NH got rid of him and good Del no longer has to pay to sustain the light-weight. A state with lots of snow has to do it now, but hey are choomed, and he is too.

Schadenfreude on February 11, 2014 at 7:22 PM

but hey they are choomed

Schadenfreude on February 11, 2014 at 7:24 PM

Midas on February 11, 2014 at 6:37 PM

The VJ_Sport fellow suggested me to be your sock. Or vise versa. Hope I got his nom correct. I don’t have the thread handy or I would link it. ; )

Bmore on February 11, 2014 at 7:08 PM

LOL

Well, I’ll consider that a compliment – and that guy’s a nutter. :)

Midas on February 11, 2014 at 7:32 PM

Administration officials dispute that this is happening on any large scale. Further, Treasury officials said Monday that businesses will be told to “certify” that they are not shedding full-time workers simply to avoid the mandate. Officials said employers will be told to sign a “self-attestation” on their tax forms affirming this, under penalty of perjury.

If Treasury can intimidate businesses to “certify” that no jobs are shifted to part-time to avoid the mandate, then they will have “proof” that Obamacare is not causing this. It doesn’t matter if it’s true or not, it’s just for spin.

NbyNW on February 11, 2014 at 7:45 PM

You’re just mad seeing a beautiful and accomplished black woman in the White House. Deal.

libfreeordie on February 11, 2014 at 10:14 AM

You mean the same one whose job at the hospital was to kick poor patients out of the facility to favor wealthy ones?

The problem with liberals is that they only seem to be able to see what’s skin deep, and miss what’s inside… which carries much more weight with me. Perhaps that’s why I despise her husband even more than her.

dominigan on February 11, 2014 at 8:42 PM

How the HELL did I wake up in Venezuela?

44Magnum on February 11, 2014 at 9:08 PM

Even us real communists voted against Obama because the American left is so far off the rails we are terrified tragic to see thr whole country lurching towards fascism

redyoshii on February 11, 2014 at 9:14 PM

redyoshii on February 11, 2014 at 9:14 PM

Are you familiar with punctuation and its use?

Solaratov on February 11, 2014 at 9:32 PM

It’s been a long time coming and I finally get to post for the first time here on Hotair. Long time reader, lurker and lover of all that Hotair. Woohoo!!

Edmond Dantes on February 11, 2014 at 10:06 PM

It has to be a joke. Yesterday it was Scarborough for President, and now this? Get serious Treasury.

Next it will be Treasury demanding that the bond rating companies ‘self attest’ under penalty of perjury that the ‘clean’ debt ceiling increase is not behind the upcoming lowered ratings on US bonds.

s1im on February 11, 2014 at 10:27 PM

You’re just mad seeing a beautiful and accomplished black woman in the White House. Deal.

libfreeordie on February 11, 2014 at 10:14 AM

So how much did you contribute to Star Parker and Mia Love’s campaigns? Unless of course you’re racist.

307wolverine on February 11, 2014 at 10:36 PM

You’re just mad seeing a beautiful and accomplished black woman in the White House. Deal.

libfreeordie on February 11, 2014 at 10:14 AM

Hah, parachute

Schadenfreude on February 11, 2014 at 10:56 PM

Let’s see: The President tells companies that they cannot make operational decisions that he doesn’t like?

Hmmm, reminds me of countries “we” used to feel sorry for. MSM? MSM?

Perhaps the edict is intended as another employment push for lawyers . . . It shouldn’t take long to get the lawsuits flowing. It should take about a day for courts to strike this requirement down. Unfortunately, it will probably take years.

Even Democrats might flinch at this, and should push the President to back off on this overreach.

Then again, many Dems think it is OK for the IRS to silence conservatives to win elections.

ha_tspc on February 12, 2014 at 6:16 AM

There’s not enough prisons in the world that could hold everybody who will cheat on this. I think it is funny. Liberals brains work backward, if they have one. And I’m not sure they do.

tmgrant on February 12, 2014 at 7:07 AM

Unlike you Libby, I do believe in true diversity and that means you listen and then respect others viewpoints when you disagree. If you believe in diversity you do not try to change others that are different from you to your own narrow viewpoints. That is called monolithic uniformity and is standard ole’ Fascism.
Of course you will never see me as a true Liberal as I don’t walk lockstep without questioning those I walk with. You will never understand how someone that sees themselves as liberal also disagrees with your version of diversity. I see your type all the time as we run in the same circles.
Bmore, please call me HL as I like attention as much as the next person.
Cheers
HonestLib on February 11, 2014 at 5:42 PM

Woah. Welcome HL! (If that is your real name ;)

onomo on February 12, 2014 at 8:11 AM

Please, stop feeding the f*cking trolls. Holy shit, people.
Midas on February 11, 2014 at 2:41 PM

Hey, I was just poking’em with a stick everytime hear got near my cage. He’s creepy.

onomo on February 12, 2014 at 8:14 AM

You’re just mad seeing a beautiful and accomplished black woman in the White House. Deal.
libfreeordie on February 11, 2014 at 10:14 AM

Of all his prattle to date did anybody figure out what the hell this guy was talking about here?

onomo on February 12, 2014 at 9:21 AM

As of today there should be a thousand lawsuits filed against this!!!!!!

Caseoftheblues on February 12, 2014 at 9:22 AM

All bent…is more like it.

Schadenfreude on February 11, 2014 at 4:42 PM

As in OOTSP “bent” = evil? (C.S. Lewis reference for you libtards)

Nutstuyu on February 12, 2014 at 9:26 AM

I am not surprised that it is now a federal crime to disagree with Obamacare.

When Obama tried to force the Catholic Church to pay for contraceptives, I realized that the First Amendment was essentially null and void. It doesn’t matter that Obama did not succeed. The important fact is that he tried something that would once have been thought unthinkable. He only failed because he got caught.

I noticed that Obama’s attempt to destroy the First Amendment went virtually unchallenged by any other so-called supporter of freedom of speech and religion.

The U.S. Government today is something that you have to survive. The tax code is biased against families, the government is trying to control all aspects of education, and when you’re an adult, the government views you as a potential dependent. Your enemies are its friends, it’s so-called “policies” are ways to destroy your job, it is always at odds with the Law, and it does not defend its borders, or protect its people.

So, you may consider yourself a “citizen,” if you wish, and you may boast of how your “representatives” work for you, but it is all lies. The cold reality is that you are a dependent, you are a subject, you are an atom. You are more like the inert, stored bodies in The Matrix than anything else, and your Rulers are venal and corrupt Imps masquerading as Men. The whole government is a farce.

So, is it News that opposing Obamacare is a federal crime? Only if you’re an idiot who doesn’t remember what happened virtually yesterday.

Herald of Woe on February 12, 2014 at 9:43 AM

Woe is the company that cuts back from, say, 103 to 97. The reason won’t matter. Guilty until proven innocent in an administrative review by the executive branch.

NY2SC on February 12, 2014 at 9:47 AM

Isn’t someone going to remind us which page of not caring he’s on?

rogerb on February 12, 2014 at 10:36 AM

Can anyone explain what the legal status of an Executive Order is?

Would the Supreme Court rule on it, if it were challenged? Since it’s not a law, would it even be a subject of litigation?

Since an EO isn’t a statute, what is it? Is it like a temporary injunction? Is it pending some other action of Congress?

When an EO is in conflict with duly passed legislation, what happens?

I tend to the view that these recent EOs mean nothing really, until the legislation it seeks to correct is amended by the legislature. In the meantime, employers must follow the law, as written.

virgo on February 13, 2014 at 1:19 AM

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