Guest Column

Latest Obamacare delay picks winners and losers

If we’ve learned anything since President Obama has taken office, it’s that this administration is not capable of managing anything. I wouldn’t even trust them with a yard sale. As we’ve seen over the last year, one of the administration’s biggest failures has been the execution of Obamacare. It was so poorly written that it seems like they are picking and choosing which laws to enforce as they go along, and delaying others that aren’t working.

The latest delay now affects small businesses. The Obama administration recently announced they have chosen to delay the Small Business Health Options Program (SHOP) in eighteen states until at least 2016. This program is intended to allow customers to choose from a variety of healthcare options. However, because of this delay, and several delays in the past, small businesses only have one option in the eighteen states where “employee choice” is not effective.

Earlier in June, the Center for Medicaid and Medicare Services gave state insurance commissioners the chance to request an additional year-long delay for employee choice, if they believed it would lead to significant price increases in the small-business insurance market. The states granted the delay were Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Delaware, Illinois, Kansas, Louisiana, Maine, Michigan, Montana, New Hampshire, New Jersey, North Carolina, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, South Dakota and West Virginia. Meanwhile, 14 states using federally facilitated SHOP exchanges, including Georgia, will be instituting employee choice in 2015.

This delay is more proof that this healthcare law is unworkable and bad for small businesses. The pattern of continued delay and disarray is especially disappointing. The mismanagement and shortfall of this program is causing the American people and small business owners to lose trust in their government’s ability to do just about anything. We need a law that works for everyone, including small businesses - not one where the administration picks the winners and losers.

(Republican Lynn Westmoreland represents the Third Congressional District in Georgia, which includes Coweta County.)

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