Recently we pointed out, referring to the dozens of impromptu “revisions” to Obamacare, that despite the administration and even some of its critics carelessly saying the president has “changed the law,” he can’t.
A major concern is that even if Barack Obama says this or that portion of the law—any law—isn’t being enforced, that doesn’t mean he or someone else won’t show up the day after tomorrow ready to enforce it. As we said February 19, the problem with Obama’s attempts to rule by decree is that “Those who bow to today’s decree must know they may be told tomorrow to bow to its opposite.”
Welcome to tomorrow.
The Internal Revenue Service, last seen refining its techniques for intimidating citizens who might harbor thoughts of criticizing the government, made it known that amid all the delays of Obamacare deadlines, one won’t be delayed at all: You have to buy health insurance this year or pay a penalty when you file next year’s income tax return.
It’s understandable if you’re confused, but don’t try pleading confusion to the IRS. Obama has decreed that the black-letter law of the Affordable Care Act, as the comparatively beneficent-appearing Nixon administration used to say, is “inoperative” where mandated coverage by employers is concerned. Nothing was said about the mandate for individual consumers. Translation: Business groups have lobbyists; you don’t.
You do, however, have the House Republicans. They were planning this week to do by lawful means what Obama might have done illegally, if he gave a hoot in Hades what happens to Americans victimized by his crowning achievement.
There isn’t the slightest chance Harry Reid’s Senate will take up the House bill. All the better, with an election eight months ahead.