Late last week, the Obama administration announced a month-long push back for second-year Obamacare enrollments, placing the enrollment date conveniently past election day. With that move, the administration will successfully push back the horrifying optics of disastrous rate hikes, lending a hand to Democrats up for election in 2014.
Then on Wednesday, as we headed into a slow news cycle because of the Thanksgiving holiday, the administration announced another delay – a major element of the new health care law that would allow small businesses to buy insurance online for their employees through the new federal marketplace. This too, was pushed back until after the midterm elections.
This is, of course, the same administration that concocted an entirely false sense of urgency on certain legislative matters via the “We Can’t Wait” campaign. Now however, as the Obamacare train wreck rolls on and mid-term elections appear along the horizon, the concept of “We Can’t Wait” has seemingly turned to ‘Hold the Phone’.
But this isn’t even vaguely the first time the Obama administration has slowed down policies or votes that could prove to be election day negatives for Democrats struggling to hold onto their congressional seats.
With that, here are the top 10 instances where President “We Can’t Wait” has tried to stall items in an attempt to hide them from the public until after they have voted…
10) Rangeling in Corrupt Politicians
In a clear demonstration that politics trumps ethics in today’s Democratic party, the ethics committee continually delayed the trials of Representatives Charlie Rangel and Maxine Waters through to a lame duck session in November, 2010.
Politico reported that Waters had “been hit with three ethics violations related to actions she and her top aide, Mikael Moore, took in September and October 2008 on behalf of a minority-owned bank in which her husband owned stock
As for Rangel:
Rangel has been hit with 13 ethics charges, including allegations that he improperly solicited money from corporate officials and lobbyists for the Charles B. Rangel Public Policy Center in New York; failed to disclose hundreds of thousands of dollars of income and assets on financial disclosure forms; maintained multiple rent-stabilized apartments in a luxury Harlem apartment building; and failed to pay income taxes on a villa in the Dominican Republic.
Rangel’s trial was subsequently held on November 15th, and Waters’ was scheduled for the 29th. Rangel would be found guilty of 11 ethics violations, while Waters trial was further postponed for two years due to disarray in the committee. She would eventually be cleared due to insufficient evidence.
9) General Delay-Us
Reports surfaced shortly after the 2012 presidential election that the resignation of General David Petraeus was pushed until after Election Day at the request of the Obama administration. The general had begun an extramarital affair with Paula Broadwell in 2011. Attorney General Eric Holder was aware that the FBI had discovered the affair, but Director of Intelligence James Clapper was not advised until November 6th. Petraeus would then resign three days later.
An FBI source explained, “The decision was made to delay the resignation apparently to avoid potential embarrassment to the president before the election.”
8) Bush’s Fault
Democrats, who controlled the Senate agenda in 2010, blamed Republicans for conspiring to derail plans to vote on an extension of the Bush tax cuts prior to the election.
Democrats had spent weeks claiming the issue would be a winner for them at the ballot box, then lacked the courage of their convictions in pulling the trigger on a vote before the deadline.
7) A New Date For The Mandate
In what the Hill called a “stunning announcement,” the White House announced that the employer mandate in Obamacare would be delayed by a year, placing it just after the 2014 midterm elections, and potentially disarming one aspect of the train wreck for the GOP in their quest to unseat vulnerable Democrats. The mandate requires businesses with 50 or more employees to provide those that are considered full-time workers with government approved health insurance plans, or risk paying a fine.
This amendment to Obamacare has been questioned for its legality, but making such a move also indicates just how detrimental the employer mandate is.
While conservative talk show host Rush Limbaugh referred to the tactic as a way to “delay the suffering”, the mandate had already prompted numerous employers to respond by cutting thousands of jobs or hours for their employees as a cost-cutting measure.
6) Cuts Like a Knife
Recent estimates indicate that Obamacare raids Medicare to fund other aspects of the legislation – to the tune of $717 billion over 10 years, with $154 billion of that coming out of the Medicare Advantage program. Medicare Advantage provides money for private insurers to cover seniors.
Those cuts had to be covered up in a major way, in order to dupe seniors in the election.
In May of 2012, it was discovered that the administration had developed a ploy to spend $8.35 billion in taxpayer money to hide the effects of Obamacare’s Medicare Advantage cuts until after the election. The Weekly Standard referred to it as the “Senior Swindle” and described it as a brazen “attempt to keep Obamacare’s effects from being demonstrated until it’s too late for voters to respond.”
5) Coal Country Crush
A month prior to his re-election bid, President Obama’s EPA, according to a report from Senator James Inhofe, “punted” on numerous regulations in an attempt to “earn votes” for a second term.
A few days before election day, another report surfaced that the administration illegally failed to meet a deadline for releasing regulatory plans for the coming year.
Why? Because letting voters in coal-reliant states know that their industry and economic livelihood were about to be crushed would not translate well at the ballot box.
On the eve of the election, we gave coal country a dire warning of what was to come:
Lurking quietly in the shadows, behind a wall of political rhetoric and campaign season hype, is a post-election surprise that could ring the death knell for the coal industry, killing massive amounts of jobs in states such as Ohio, Virginia, and Pennsylvania.
Reports are beginning to surface that the Obama Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is set to implement a slew of anti-coal regulations after the election, which will result in the elimination of nearly 900,000 jobs annually.
In June of 2012, a report from Clean Coal USA had indicated that jobs were already being decimated through the closing of 288 coal plants, which have directly noted the EPA as a factor in some manner.
In September, the EPA released a draft regulation that would hold the “coal industry to impossible standards”, potentially leading to hundreds of thousands of lost jobs.
4) Pipeline to Nowhere
Three years. Approval by 10 federal agencies, including the Environmental Protection Agency. Study upon study demonstrating the economic and energy independence benefits to our nation. Bi-partisan support.
Yet in 2011, the White House announced that they would delay a decision on the Keystone XL pipeline until after the 2012 election. The move was designed not only to placate environmentalists, but to also plant a small seed of hope that President Obama may at some point, after the election, put aside politics and pursue a project that would provide tens of thousands of jobs in a struggling economic recovery, hundreds of thousands of barrels of oil per day, and countless opportunities for revenue.
In the end however, more than five years since the controversy began, President Obama has shown his allegiance to environmental extremists, continuing to avoid commitment to a project that former President Bush described as a “no brainer.”
3) Enrollin’ Rollin’ Rollin’, Right Past Election Day
As mentioned above, the Obama Administration has, coincidentally I’m sure, pushed back the start of second-year enrollment in Obamacare by one month to November 15th, 2014.
The Obama administration plans to push back by a month the second-year start of enrollment in its health program to give insurers more time to adjust to growing pains in the U.S. law, a move that may stave off higher premiums before the 2014 congressional elections.
Moving enrollment out of election season will hide the price hikes and cancellations from voters until after they have had a chance to cast their ballot in the 2014 mid-term elections.
An early Christmas present for vulnerable Democrats who are already seeing their re-election chances tanking.
2) So Long, Solyndra Employees
As midterm elections in 2010 were approaching, the poster child for the President’s green energy stimulus plan, Solyndra, had found itself in economic shambles. The stimulus was being touted as a tremendous job creator, but Solyndra, a major beneficiary of taxpayer funds, was poised to announce significant layoffs at their factory.
According to an e-mail from a Solyndra adviser however, the administration was “pushing ‘very hard’ to delay making the layoffs public until the day after the elections.”
Ultimately, the White House was successful in masking this story until voters had already cast their ballots, with the layoff announcement being made on November 3rd, one day after the midterms.
1) Mr. Flexibility
It was the hot mic heard ’round the world. In March of 2012, the President was caught discussing the contentious issue of missile defense with Russian President Dmitri Medvedev, telling him he needed “space” from Russian President Vladimir Putin, and that “After my election, I have more flexibility.”
The comment raised suspicions amongst Republicans who wondered if the President was referring to concessions in missile defense talks, and whether or not this “flexibility” would apply to other issues concerning a President who would no longer have to be concerned about the concerns of voters.
The incident led Doug Powers to translate the flexibility statement to “if you back off this year, you can have it your way after I’m re-elected.”
The Obama administration may be a case-study in smoke and mirrors, but make no mistake that this is an overall Democrat strategy to winning elections. It will happen more prior to the 2014 elections. And it will most certainly happen again in 2016, even with Obama off the ballot.
It has to be a part of the overall strategy for Democrats. How many voters would have cast their ballots for politicians supporting these policies if they really knew the effects these policies would have? We know the president knew you couldn’t keep your plan, and if Americans knew it, they wouldn’t have kept this president.