Put another way: while this is obnoxious…
By now ObamaCare’s proliferating delays, exemptions and administrative retrofits are too numerous to count, most of them of dubious legality. The text of the Affordable Care Act specifically says when the mandate must take effect—”after December 31, 2013″—and does not give the White House the authority to change the terms.
Changing an unambiguous statutory mandate requires the approval of Congress, but then this President has often decided the law is whatever he says it is.
…it is also a precedent. There are going to be a lot of people telling the next Republican President* to use this precedent to do all sorts of things that right now we kind of just shrug about. And before you tell me that it’s never going to happen, consider this: the next Republican President is going to be the one who took those people seriously, because those are also the people who are currently getting transcendentally pissed off at the way that the Democratic party leadership is running the country into the ground, at high speed. And it’s amazing what you can accomplish when you just don’t care if people love you for doing it.
— Rick Wilson (@TheRickWilson) February 11, 2014
*I expect that to be in 2017. If it is not 2017, however, it will be in 2021.