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Topics: Obamacare

Fact checker: Nancy Pelosi wrong about Obamacare employer mandate not being delayed

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Beltway Confidential,Obamacare,The Washington Post,Health Care,Nancy Pelosi,Ashe Schow,Employer Mandate

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi's claim that the Obamacare employer mandate "was not delayed" is false, according to the Washington Post fact checker Glenn Kessler.

Pelosi, D-Calif., made the claim during a Thursday news conference, saying, "The point is, is that the mandate was not delayed. Certain reporting by businesses that could be perceived as onerous, that reporting requirement was delayed, and partially to review how it would work and how it could be better. It was not a delay of the mandate for the businesses, and there shouldn't be a delay of the mandate for individuals."

Kessler admits that Pelosi is correct in the reporting requirement delay, but knocks her for ignoring the end of the Treasury blog post that spawned the reports of the employer mandate delay. That July 2 blog post also said that "transition relief to the employer shared responsibility payments" would be delayed.

Kessler explains that those employer shared-responsibility payments are the penalties that businesses with 50 or more employees would face if they did not provide health insurance to all employers working 30 hours or more a week. "Those payments are a key part of the mandate to provide insurance," Kessler wrote. "And it certainly looks like those fines were delayed a year."

The reason behind Pelosi's misinformation? She was "diminishing the impact of the decision," spokesman Drew Hammill told Kessler.

Kessler awarded Pelosi three out of a possible four Pinocchios for her false claim. Apparently, readers believed that she should have received the maximum four Pinocchios, which prompted Kessler to update his post with his reasoning.

"Some readers have asked why this claim did not result in Four Pinocchios," Kessler wrote. "We initially were tempted to award that rating, but decided that Pelosi did describe correctly what Treasury did, which is delay reporting requirements. But she then acted as if there was no consequence, which is incorrect. The difference between a Three and a Four is sometimes narrow, and we ultimately concluded she just missed earning a Four. But it was certainly a close call."

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Ashe Schow

Commentary Writer
The Washington Examiner