Former Press Secretary to President Obama Robert Gibbs has pronounced the Obamacare employer mandate dead on arrival. Delayed twice already, the Employer Shared Responsibility provision of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) is already on life support. Gibbs thinks it will be put out of its misery soon.
“I don’t think the employer mandate will go into effect. It’s a small part of the law. I think it will be one of the first things to go,” he told the audience at last week's Benefits Selling Expo in Colorado Springs, Colo.
Gibbs also broke with PPACA orthodoxy by calling for a cheaper level of health policies, saying, "Health care has to add an additional layer of coverage cheaper than the plans already offered."
Gibbs, however, is still a staunch supporter of health care reform: “Status quo isn’t worth going back to,” he said. “The better path forward is the path to better care.”
Shortly after Gibbs' remarks, current Obama Press Secretary Jay Carney announced at a media gathering: "We're going to continue to implement the law."
"This requirement ensures that larger employers either offer quality, affordable coverage to their employees or help offset the cost to taxpayers of these uncovered employees getting tax credits through the health insurance marketplace," Carney said at the White House. He also noted that the individual mandate — requiring all Americans to purchase health insurance or else pay a fine — starts this year.