The administration will give a one-year extension to medium and large businesses to meet the requirements of a major Obamacare provision requiring them to provide affordable healthcare to their employees.
That "employer mandate," Bloomberg explains, was the subject of protest by a number of employer groups who said the cost and complexity of meeting the law's requirements by 2014 was too burdensome. Now, businesses with more than 50 employees have until 2015 before facing fines for non-compliance, and Obama and company will take another year to simplify the process. Bloomberg's scoop cites two unnamed officials, referencing an apparent Fourth of July news dump intended for release "later this week." The delay will move the implementation of the provision, which conservatives have recently argued is one of the the bill's weakest links, until after the midterms.
The delay fits into the territory of holiday news dumps, no doubt, because it's basically a giant, well-lit soap box atop a red carpet for opponents of Obama's health care reform. Since taking over the House of Representatives in 2011, Republicans have staged 37 votes to repeal the entire 2010 law. And while today's employer extension leaves other parts of the law intact, including those already in effect, and the still-standing 2014 deadline for the individual mandate, conservatives are happy to step up and talk about how the announcement renders the whole law vulnerable. Here's a sampling (emphasis ours):