Obama's Tangled Regulatory Web Angers Unions, Trade Associations

Examiner (Washington, D.C.), The, February 10, 2014 | Go to article overview

Obama's Tangled Regulatory Web Angers Unions, Trade Associations


Remember the maxim parents teach children about lying: "What a tangled web we weave when we practice to deceive." Tell one lie and it soon must be followed by another, then another to cover for the first falsehood. Similarly tangled webs are woven every day in government: Officials set out to regulate one thing and soon find themselves thinking they must regulate more, often unexpected, things because of the precedent established by the original regulation. President Obama and his appointees are weaving multiple tangled regulatory webs, but two of them stand out at the moment.

First, labor unions vigorously backed Obamacare in 2009 and 2010. Many unions also received temporary exemptions from various provisions of Obamacare after it became law. But sooner or later, the exemptions must end and the law take full effect. So unions are now up in arms, having learned the hollow truth about Obama's promises that people could keep the health insurance plans and doctors they like. Most of the unions offer health insurance plans that they fear they won't be able to continue under Obamacare. Dropping those plans will force millions of unions members and retirees into Obamacare and put them at the risk of losing many of their doctors and other health care providers.

No wonder union leaders are angry. In a brutal post last week on Huffington Post, D. Taylor, head of the powerful UNITE HERE union, warned, "Our members like their plans, period. They want to keep them, period." And in a declaration that likely shocked Democratic campaign strategists, Taylor told the Las Vegas Review-Journal, "It's almost impossible to get excited for any election with the loss of our health plans looming over us and no fix in sight. …

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