WASHINGTON – Chautauqua County’s representative in Congress is continuing his fight against the Affordable Care Act, despite the law now being on the books for nearly four years.
Congressman Tom Reed (R-Corning) was one of 250 house members who voted in favor of The Simple Fairness Act – a bill that extends the enrollment deadline for the Affordable Care Act to families and individuals. According to a statement by Reed following the vote, he and others who supported the bill are simply asking that individuals and families be given same opportunity to delay enrolling in Obamacare that large businesses have already received.
Under the current law, individuals who do not purchase health insurance under Obamacare face a fine of $95, or one percent of taxable income for 2014. In 2015, that fine is set to increase to $325 or two percent of taxable income. The Simple Fairness Act delays the individual mandate for one year so that individuals and families are not subjected to a fine. Reed says the delay is a simple issue of fairness.
The bill was approved 250-160, with 27 Democrats voting in favor of the measure. Washington insiders speculate the vote by some democrats is an election-year tactic to distance themselves from Obamacare, given the law’s rocky roll-out in October.
Despite the Democratic defections, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi dismissed Wednesday’s vote as a waste of time, and pointed out that it marked the 50th time the Republican-led House of Representatives had voted fruitlessly to alter or repeal Obamacare. It’s unlikely the bill will be taken up in the Democratic led U.S. Senate.