This is the part of the Frankenstein movies where the creature attacks the scientist who gave it life. The creature is Obamacare, and the scientist is big labor. Labor Unions were a big part of getting the Democrats the super-majority they needed to pass Obamacare, and they were huge supporters of the President's signature legislation. However in recent days, they too are worried about what the bills will do to their healthcare.
― Mary Shelley, Frankenstein
Last week three of the nation’s largest unions sent a letter to Harry Reid and Nancy Pelosi, warning that Obamacare would “shatter not only our hard-earned health benefits, but destroy the foundation of the 40 hour work week that is the backbone of the American middle class.”
The letter was penned by James P. Hoffa, general president of the International Brotherhood of Teamsters; Joseph Hansen, international president of the United Food and Commercial Workers International Union; and Donald “D.” Taylor, president of UNITE-HERE, a union representing hotel, airport, food service, gaming, and textile workers.Of course it does. Conservatives and Teaparty patriots have been screaming that from the mountain tops since the bill was in development. NOW They are first figuring it out? If it wasn't hurting non-union workers also I would be laughing my arse off.
“When you and the President sought our support for the Affordable Care Act,” they begin, “you pledged that if we liked the health plans we have now, we could keep them. Sadly, that promise is under threat…We have been strong supporters of the notion that all Americans should have access to quality, affordable health care. We have also been strong supporters of you. In campaign after campaign we have put boots on the ground, gone door-to-door to get out the vote, run phone banks and raised money to secure this vision. Now this vision has come back to haunt us.”
‘Unintended consequences’ causing ‘nightmare scenarios’
The union leaders are concerned that Obamacare’s employer mandate incentivizes smaller companies to shift their workers to part-time status, because employers are not required to provide health coverage to part-time workers. “We have a problem,” they write, and “you need to fix it.”
“The unintended consequences of the ACA are severe,” they continue. “Perverse incentives are causing nightmare scenarios. First, the law creates an incentive for employers to keep employees’ work hours below 30 hours a week. Numerous employers have begun to cut workers’ hours to avoid this obligation, and many of them are doing so openly. The impact is two-fold: fewer hours means less pay while also losing our current health benefits.”
The labor bosses are also unhappy, because of the way Obamacare affects multi-employer health plans. Multi-employer plans, also called Taft-Hartley plans, are health insurance benefits typically arranged between a labor union in a particular industry, such as restaurants, and small employers in that industry. About 20 million workers are covered by these plans; 800,000 of Joseph Hansen’s 1.3 million UFCW members are covered this way.OOPs sorry! Weren't they paying attention? The unions are demanding a fix which will take congressional action. Anyone want to take bets on the chances of that passing the house? About as high as the chances of Obama signing a bill which protects the border before legislating i
Taft-Hartley plans, they write, “have been built over decades by working men and women,” but unlike plans offered on the ACA exchanges, unionized workers will not be eligible for subsidies, because workers with employer-sponsored coverage don’t qualify.
The only way the Union's Issue with Obamacare can be fixed is if it is overturned for ALL Americans.