Awash In Dissent

- September 12, 2013

Obama's Allies Are Taking ObamaCare To The Cleaners 


"The Nation's Largest Labor Federation Approved A Strongly Worded Resolution Wednesday That Says The Affordable Care Act Will Drive Up The Costs Of Union-Sponsored Health Plans To The Point That Workers And Employers Are Forced To Abandon Them." (Sam Hananel, "AFL-CIO Steps Up Pressure For Health Law Changes," The Associated Press, 9/11/13)

  • "This Marks The First Time The AFL-CIO Has Gone On Record Embracing That View." "Some individual unions have been complaining about the law's impact for months, but this marks the first time the AFL-CIO has gone on record embracing that view." (Sam Hananel, "AFL-CIO Steps Up Pressure For Health Law Changes," The Associated Press, 9/11/13)

The AFL-CIO Voted In Favor Of Their Resolution Even After White House Officials Had Been Calling Union Leaders To Oppose Its Passage. "White House officials have been calling union leaders about a resolution critical of ObamaCare that is set to pass on Wednesday at the AFL-CIO convention. Union leaders have been tight-lipped about the calls coming from Washington, but at least one labor official said he understands that the Obama administration has been watching the resolution's progress and expressing a desire that it not move forward." (Kevin Bogardus, "White House Calling Union Leaders Ahead Of Vote On Obamacare Resolution," The Hill , 9/11/13)

Unions Have Become Increasingly Skeptical Of ObamaCare As It Continues To Be Enacted

"The Laborers' International Union Of North America Will Back Repeal Of" ObamaCare "Unless Substantial Changes Are Made." ""The Laborers' International Union of North America will back repeal of the Affordable Care Act unless substantial changes are made for union members' health coverage, LIUNA General President Terry O'Sullivan told POLITICO." (Alexander Burns, "At AFL-CIO Meeting, LIUNA Chief Says Fix Or Repeal ObamaCare," Politico, 9/9/13)

AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka: ObamaCare Is Causing Business To Cut Employee Hours. AL JAZEERA's LIBBY CASEY: "Richard Trumka, head of the AFL-CIO recently told David Shuster on 'Talk to Al Jazeera' that law is having unintended consequences on American businesses and workers." RICHARD TRUMKA: "The Affordable Care Act does need some modifications to it. Because as it does right now, what's happening is you have employers that the law says if your employees work 30 hours or more a week you got to give them health care. So, they're restructuring their workforce to give 29 and a half hours so they don't have to provide them health care." (Al Jazeera's " Al Jazeera America," 9/2/13)

  • Trumka: "We Made Some Mistakes" On ObamaCare. "'ObamaCare is a major step in the right direction but yeah, I said, we made some mistakes,' Trumka told reporters at a Christian Science Monitor breakfast." (Kevin Brogardus, "Trumka: 'Mistakes' Made In ObamaCare," The Hill's Briefing Room, 8/29/13)


Under Threat Of Veto From The Obama White House, Dozens Of House Democrats Joined Republicans In Voting To Delay ObamaCare's Mandates

The Hill Headline: "House Defies Veto Threat, Votes To Delay ObamaCare Mandates." (Pete Kasperowicz, "House Defies Veto Threat, Votes To Delay ObamaCare Mandates," The Hill, 7/17/13)

"The House Voted Wednesday To Delay The ObamaCare Employer Mandate, Defying A White House Veto Threat And Winning Over Dozens Of Democrats." (Pete Kasperowicz, "House Defies Veto Threat, Votes To Delay ObamaCare Mandates," The Hill, 7/17/13)

  • The Bipartisan Coalition Who Voted To Delay ObamaCare's Mandates For Both Businesses And Individuals Included Moderate Democrats And 2014 "Frontliners." "The bills won 35 and 22 Democratic votes, respectively, culling primarily from the caucus's moderates, fiscally conservative Blue Dogs, pro-business New Democrats and a handful of 2014 'frontliners.'" (Emma Dumain, "Health Mandate Votes Divide Democrats," Roll Call's GOPPERS, 7/17/13)

Obama's Hill Allies Have Called For The Repeal Of ObamaCare's Medical Device Tax

Earlier This Year, A Slew Of Democrats, Including Those That Backed ObamaCare, Joined Republicans In Repeal Of The Medical Device Tax. "A slew of Democrats from states with prominent medical device industries helped push a bipartisan budget amendment through to repeal the health law's 2.3 percent tax on medical device sales." (Jason Milliman, Paige Winfield Cunningham and Brett Norman, Politico's Pulse, 3/22/13)

  • As The Amendment Was Agreed To In The Nonbinding Budget, Enough Senators Opposed The Medical Device Tax "To Surpass The 60 Votes Needed" For Repeal. "Assuming none of the provision's backers rescind their support, there is now plenty of support to surpass the 60 votes needed to repeal the device tax - if it comes to a vote, on another bill in the future. Thirty-three Democrats and one independent who caucuses with them supported the measure." (Jennifer Haberkorn, "Democrats Join Push To Dump ObamaCare Tax," Politico, 3/22/13)

The "Protect Medical Innovation Act Of 2013" Currently Has 260 Co-Sponsors; Of Which 35 Are Democrats. (H.R. 523, Introduced 2/6/13)

Other Obama Allies Are Cutting Jobs Because Of ObamaCare's Medical Device Tax

ObamaCare's Medical Device Tax Is Forcing Stryker Corporation To Lay Off A 1,000 Employees And Slash Its Research And Development Budget By 20 Percent. REPORTER: "There are also new taxes affecting west Michigan industry in particular that took effect this year. There's a new 2.3 percent excise tax on medical device manufacturers. According to some reports, Kalamazoo based Stryker has laid off more than a thousand people because of it, and owes the federal government upwards of $100 million dollars this year alone. Late last week, a Stryker spokesperson told me ObamaCare will cost the company 20% of its total research and development investments. And although it's no secret that drug-makers like Pfizer stand to profit billions because of the increased numbers of insured Americans and the corresponding increased need for medicines - they're being hit with an excise tax as well, on brand named drugs - running into tens of billions of dollars." (WWMT, 9/9/13)

  • Stryker Corp. Has Previously Announced That It Would Cut Its Work Force By 5 Percent Due To ObamaCare's Medical Device Tax. "At least three firms have already announced layoffs in anticipation of the tax, including Michigan-based Stryker Corp, a maker of hip and knee replacements that said it will cut its work force by 5 percent, losing 1,000 jobs." (N.C. Aizenman, "Medical Device Tax Repeal Bill Gains Some Ground," The Washington Post , 5/30/12)

The Heir To Stryker Corporation, Jon Stryker Is Amongst Obama's Biggest Supporters, Giving Millions To Democrats. "Jon Stryker, one of three heirs to the Stryker medical equipment company, was identified as one of the top five donors to President Obama's reelection campaign. He has given $2 million to the Priorities USA Action super PAC and has given $66,000 in contributions to Obama and the Democratic Party." ("The World's Billionaires," Forbes, Accessed 9/11/13)

Since 2007, Jon Stryker Is Donated More Than $2.9 Million To Democratic Campaigns And Affiliates. (Center For Responsive Politics, Accessed 9/11/13)

But The Obama Administration Has Said The Tax Isn't Going Anywhere

Despite Pleas For The Delay Of The Medical Device Tax From Democrat Senators, Obama Stated That He Will Not Delay Or Sign To Repeal The Medical Device Tax. WCCO's FRANK VASCELLARO: "It's the medical device tax, it's really important for companies like St. Jude and Medtronic and any medical device company and there are a number of them in Minnesota. It's a tax that would help pay for ObamaCare. And the most interesting thing is that Senator Franken and Klobuchar, who are Democrats from Obama's own party would like to perhaps repeal part of this or at least delay this medical device tax. So I asked the president today are you willing to at least delay the tax?" OBAMA: "No, and here's why. The health care bill is going to provide those medical device companies 30 million new customers. It's going to be great for business and they're doing really well right now." ( WCCO, 12/13/12)

  • Health And Human Services (HHS) Secretary Recently Reaffirmed The Obama Administration's Position That It Does Not Support Repealing ObamaCare's Medical Device Tax. REP. LARRY BUCHSON (IN-8): "The medical device tax repeal passed recently 79-20 in the Senate during their budget process. As you know, the last Congress passed in the House, 270-146 with 37 Democrats voting in the affirmative to repeal the tax. Does the administration support repealing the device tax?" SEBELIUS: "No sir." (Committee On Education And Workforce, U.S. House, Hearing, 6/4/13)


Democrat Senator Max Baucus (D-MT): "I Just See A Huge Train Wreck Coming Down." MAX BAUCUS: "I just see a huge train wreck coming down, you and I have discussed this many times, and I don't see any results yet." (Committee On Finance, U.S. Senate, Hearing, 4/17/13)

Democrat Senator Chris Coons (D-DE): I've Got "Real Concerns" About ObamaCare Implementation. "The implementation is critically important. as the final provisions of the Affordable Care Act become effective in 2014, there's a real push by the White House to insure that states are participating, that folks who can and should sign up for the new exchanges do. I'm cautiously optimistic that we'll work in partnership with the White House to insure that it's implemented appropriately, but I've got some real concerns and we have to keep a close watch on it as it's rolled out." (WCAU, 5/12/13)

Senator Angus King (I-ME), Who Caucuses With Senate Democrats, Said He Was "Very Worried About The Way It's Going To Be Implemented And The Regulations That Are Going To Be Promulgated In Response." "Sen. Angus King (I-Maine) is worried that unaccountable and overly aggressive regulators will undermine the Affordable Care Act. 'I've got to tell you, as a person who supported the Affordable Care Act, I'm very worried about the way it's going to be implemented and the regulations that are going to be promulgated in response,' King said at a conference on regulatory reform on Thursday." (Julian Hattem, "Angus King: Regulators Could Jeopardize ObamaCare," The Hill's Reg Watch, 5/9/13)

Democrat Senator Ron Wyden (D-OR) Said That Increasing Premiums Will Be A Cause For Concern To The Democrat-Led Senate. "'There is reason to be very concerned about what's going to happen with young people. If their (insurance) premiums shoot up, I can tell you, that is going to wash into the United States Senate in a hurry,' said Senator Ron Wyden, an Oregon Democrat." (David Morgan, "ObamaCare Is On The Horizon, But Will Enough People Sign Up?" Reuters, 5/5/13)

Democrat Senator Chuck Schumer (D-NY) Conceded That ObamaCare Will Be Partly Responsible For Higher Health Insurance Rates. CHUCK SCHUMER: "Our insurance department is empowered to protect families and we're going to watch them like a hawk to make sure they do. Because if they don't, these rates could go through the roof." WHEC's RAY LEVATO: "Is it because of ObamaCare?" SCHUMER: "It's in part because of ObamaCare but health care costs have been going up by double digits for years and years and years." ( WHEC, 5/2/13)

Democrat Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) Agreed With Senator Max Baucus That ObamaCare Could Be A "Train Wreck" If ObamaCare Implementation Stumbles. "'Max said unless we implement this properly it's going to be a train wreck, and I agree with him,' Reid said, echoing a warning delivered last month by Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus (D-Mont.)." (Alexander Bolton, "Reid: More Funding Needed To Prevent ObamaCare From Becoming 'Train Wreck,'" The Hill's Health Watch , 5/1/13)

Democrat Representative Ami Bera (D-CA) Has Been "Moderately To Very Concerned" With ObamaCare Increasing The Costs Of Health Care. "'I'm moderately to very concerned,' Bera said. 'I have been consistently concerned about the cost of care going up.'" (Dan Morain, "Ami Bera Dings Obama Dings Obama Administration For Rollout Of Affordable Care Act," The Sacramento Bee's The Swarm, 5/1/13)

Democrat Senator Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH), Who Is Facing Reelection In 2014, Told The White House That Small Businesses In Her State Are Clueless In Complying With ObamaCare. "Senator Jeanne Shaheen, Democrat of New Hampshire, who is up for re-election next year, said, 'We are hearing from a lot of small businesses in New Hampshire that do not know how to comply with the law.'" (Robert Pear, "Democratic Senators Tell White House Of Concerns About Health Care Law Rollout," The New York Times , 4/26/13)

Democrat Senator Jay Rockefeller (D-WV) Said ObamaCare Was "Probably The Most Complex Piece Of Legislation Ever Passed" And That "Up To This Point It Is Just Beyond Comprehension." JAY ROCKEFELLER: "I believe that the Affordable Care Act is probably the most complex piece of legislation ever passed by the United States Congress. Tax reform obviously has been huge too, but up to this point it is just beyond comprehension." (Committee On Finance, U.S. Senate, Hearing, 4/9/13)

"One High-Ranking Democrat" Shared His Concerns On ObamaCare And Said "The White House Is Going To Have To Step Up Its Game." "One high-ranking Democrat told The Hill that it is his leading concern. 'The White House is going to have to step up its game,' the lawmaker said." (Elise Viebeck, "Botched ObamaCare Rollout Tops Democratic Fears For 2014 Election," The Hill's Health Watch , 5/1/13)

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