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Constitutional law, null and void

By Jim Killebrew

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[February 13, 2014]  I wonder when enough will be enough? Even before the president changed the law again for the 27th time the other day by extending the employer mandate until after the 2014 midterm election, the Democrats who are seeking re-election in November are separating themselves from the president. They are already saying they cannot have the president close to them during the re-election time since he is so toxic with his complicit actions regarding so many scandals and his propensity to unilaterally change the law without return to Congress.

Those very Democrats who are running for re-election are the same ones who voted for the Affordable Care Act, known as Obamacare, that itself has become so toxic to the American people. They not only voted for it without a single Republican vote of support, but they continued to support it even through the Oct. 1, 2013, rollout that has fallen so flat on its face with the American people. Their support even extended to siding with the president as he declared to the American people they would be able to keep their policy if they liked it, period. Even though the few who may have actually read the Affordable Care Act, either before it was passed or after it was passed, knew there were pitfalls contained in the bill and eventual law that would harm the American people and the economy of the nation.

All this was completed during the slowest recovery of a recession in the history of the country. More than a trillion dollars in stimulus money was spent on a recovery that has not materialized.

So now, businesses with over 50 employees will be punished with penalties of insurmountable costs by being mandated by the power of government to furnish health insurance to employees regardless of the cost. Those smaller businesses are being punished in the same manner if they are working the employees the standard 40-hour workweek. The law is mandating a 30-hour workweek since companies who can work the employees less than 30 hours per week are relieved from the burdensome requirements. Of course this has caused those businesses to reduce the number of hours the employee may work.

The lack of thought put into the passage of the law in the first place has caused numerous unintended consequences. Namely, the facts that when people have their hours cut, they make less money and are required to furnish their own insurance as well. The vast majority of people cannot support a family when their paycheck has been cut and their insurance is not a benefit from their company. Hence, the changing of the law by the president to extend the mandate for employers with over 50 employees and now, for small businesses as well, has disrupted the flow of jobs and the security one's job once held. The additional factors of the consequences of the Obamacare law include much higher insurance premiums, fines for not having insurance and far greater deductible costs per insurance plan.

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The irony of the president's dilemma with the Democrats trying to be re-elected is that he is simply being tossed like a wave back and forth with each new situation that emerges from the fractured policy of the Affordable Care Act.

Last week the president and his administration supporters were touting the so-called positive effects of the Office of Management and Budget report that revealed 2.5 million jobs would be lost due to Obamacare. The president's and Democrats' positive spin on the negative report included such ludicrous talking points as the person can now quit the second part-time job and still not worry about not having insurance because the government subsidy would pay for it. Or, the individual would no longer need to have the job just for the benefits. Another positive, they said, was the person could quit their job and spend more time with their family. Or, the person would no longer have to work for someone else; they could simply quit their job and go into business for themselves. Then there was the one that stated the person could quit their job and read to their children at night before the child goes to bed. Finally, the most ludicrous talking point of all, the person could now quit his job and enjoy the "freedom." What would that freedom be? Not having a job, living on subsistence wages from one part-time job with the government paying for a low-tier insurance policy?

Of course, now for this week, the president and his followers are saying those same people can't quit their jobs because he just changed the law and is granting an extension to businesses for yet another year, after the November election, so people continue to have to work those two part-time jobs to make ends meet. So how many times does the president get to take a law that was formed in Congress, signed by the president and been declared by the Supreme Court to be constitutional, and yet, throw over the power of Congress and the Supreme Court simply by using his own executive power to change that law outside the separation of powers by using his pen and phone?

If he is allowed to continue to negate the power of the Congress and the Supreme Court by changing the laws, enforcing only those laws he wants to, and writing into American law the policies he wants, at what point will our constitutional form of government become null and void? Is it any wonder the Democrats who supported him in the beginning are now hiding themselves from him as best they can? They recognize being paired up with his administration is a negative for them and will likely end in their defeat for re-election. Wow, what can we learn about their character and integrity, both then and now; and especially in the future?


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