Health care was a minor focus of President Obamas State of the Union address Tuesday, however, he did say it was crucial for supporting the middle class the focal point of his speech. We can't put the security of families at risk by taking away their health insurance, or unraveling the new rules on Wall Street, or refighting past battles on immigration when we've got a system to fix, Obama said. And if a bill comes to my desk that tries to do any of these things, it will earn my veto.
In a morning address prior to Obamas speech, Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-Utah), chairman of the Finance Committee, said he planned to take a piecemeal approach to alter the Affordable Care Act. Were going to continue to strike away at it, piece by piece if we have to, he said at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce.
A bill repealing the ACA wont get past Obamas veto pen, Hatch said, but Republicans must agree on an alternative to the health care law should the Supreme Court overturn the subsidies rule, which says consumers who sign up for insurance on the public marketplace can receive premium tax credits in states that havent established their own exchange. The high court is set to hear arguments in King v. Burwell in March and a decision is expected by June.
Obama also said he will take action to help all workers earn seven days of sick leave each year, but the Republican-controlled Congress will likely oppose this, said Michael Droke, a Seattle-based partner in the labor and employment division at international law firm Dosey and Whitney. Many larger companies already offer paid sick leave, so there is little impact on their businesses, he said. The Republican Congress, however, is unlikely to impose any new burdens on small business.
Register or login for access to this item and much more
All Employee Benefit Adviser content is archived after seven days.
Community members receive:
- All recent and archived articles
- Conference offers and updates
- A full menu of enewsletter options
- Web seminars, white papers, ebooks
Already have an account? Log In
Don't have an account? Register for Free Unlimited Access