Wednesday, March 5, 2014

27 Democrats support House GOP measure to delay ObamaCare penalty

By Pete KasperowiczThe Hill - March 05, 2014, 03:42 pm

healthcare_costsTwenty-seven Democrats on Wednesday sided with House Republicans on a bill to delay tax penalties for failing to buy health insurance this year under ObamaCare.

The vote, which reflects growing Republican frustration with President Obama's selective implementation of the law, again shows some level of Democratic support for a legislative change to the law. Several House bills aimed at making the health law more transparent have also received support from a few dozen Democrats.

Most of the 27 Democrats voting for the bill are seen as vulnerable in the November elections, and one of them, Rep. Gary Peters (Mich.), is running for the Senate this year.

Overall, the House voted 250-160 in favor of the bill, and just one Republican, Rep. Paul Broun (R-Ga.), voted against it. Broun said the law should be scrapped, not delayed.

The bill is not expected to be taken up in the Senate, but Republicans hope it can bolster their case for taking the Senate in this fall's midterm elections. The party wants to make the elections as much as possible about the problems of ObamaCare, and is hoping to exploit Democratic division on the issue.

The bill was introduced late last week in response to the Obama administration's recent decision to delay enforcement of a requirement that companies with between 50 and 100 workers must offer health plans to their employees. Republicans say repeated delays on implementation of the employer mandates must be met by a delay in the individual mandate to buy insurance, and that anything less is unfair.

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