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NAM: Several Democrats voted With Republicans to delay ACA employer mandate

The Washington Times (7/19, Howell, Boyer) reports that the House’s votes on the Affordable Care Act’s employer and individual mandates this week “exposed the cracks in Democrats’ unity,” and “provided Republicans a springboard to keep the pressure on both the Senate and President Obama ahead of next year’s elections.”

Thirty-five voted to delay the employer mandate. Commentary Weighs In On Employer Mandate Delay. Several opinion pieces Friday weigh in on various aspects of the employer mandate delay. Though some still question the legality of the delay, most today focus on the implications of the votes held in Congress Wednesday.

Indeed, two pieces draw upon the number of Democrats who voted with Republicans on the delays to question the level of support for the law. In an editorial titled “ObamaCare’s Eroding Support,” the Wall Street Journal (7/19, Subscription Publication) details the defections from the President’s party, as one of six Democrats voted to delay the employer mandate delay and one of nine to delay the individual mandate. The paper writes that while President Obama appeared confident about the Affordable Care Act during his Thursday speech touting the law, bipartisan opposition to it is growing.

Similarly, Kimberly Strassel, in her Wall Street Journal (7/19, Subscription Publication) column, calls the number of Democrats who broke with their party in the Wednesday cotes a “health scare” for the party.

Ronald D. Rotunda, professor of jurisprudence at Chapman University and co-author of a six-volume treatise on constitutional law, questions President Obama’s authority to postpone the employer mandate in an op-ed for the Washington Post (7/19). He continues, “If the president has the discretion to ignore laws that he prefers not to exist, the constitutional limits of presidential authority have the restraining power of air.” In an editorial, the Washington Times (7/19) writes that if the law fails, its “collapse…won’t be pretty, but it will make a lot of noise.” The piece concludes, “some of that noise will be skeptics reminding Congress and the White House that ‘we told you so.’”

Teresa Welsh, in an opinion piece for the US News & World Report (7/19), asks whether the employer mandate should be delayed, and lays out the arguments of both sides. The post concludes with an electronic poll, asking the same question. Jennifer Rubin, in her Washington Post (7/19) “Right Turn” blog, commends House Speaker John’s Boehner (R-OH) opposition to the Affordable Care Act, but writes, “his conference needs to do more than vote to delay or repeal the noxious provisions.” She continues, “Without a GOP alternative to Obamacare, their complaints are empty and their votes unlikely to be taken seriously by voters.”

Similarly, Physician Philip Caper calls for both sides of the argument to come together to improve the Affordable Care Act in an op-ed for the Bangor (ME) Daily News (7/18). FOX News America’s Newsroom (7/18) featured Representative Marsha Blackburn (R-TN) discussing the vote to delay both mandates of the ACA.

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