If Obamacare is so good…

why are we seeing the administration granting more and more waivers from the provisions of Obamacare?

By mid November, 111 companies (including some unions) had received Obamacare waivers from the Secretary of Health and Human Services.  As of December 3, that number had climbed to 222.  Included in the updated list are well known names such as Waffle House and Universal Orlando.  But, there are also some names you may never have heard of.

… there are more unions who have received waivers in this latest batch, like the Bricklayers Local 1 of MD, VA and DC, the United Food and Commercial Workers Union in Mount Laurel, New Jersey, the Indiana Teamsters Health Benefits Fund, Service Employees International Union Local 1 Cleveland Welfare Fund, and more are listed.

The waivers are also going to a number of average sounding companies like Telesis Management Corporation, Trans-System Inc., Varsity Contractors Inc. and Moore’s Retread & Tire of the Ark-La-Tex, Inc.

If you are interested, you can find the complete list here.

As I see it, here is the problem.  A group of folks who know little or nothing about health care decide that they know best, so they craft a svelte 2700 page law to “fix” the system.  Because, according to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D. Ca.), we had to pass the bill before we could see what was in it, we are now “seeing what’s in it.”  Companies large and small are realizing they have two options…request a waiver and hope they receive it, or drop coverage for some or all employees altogether.  So, waivers are quietly being granted by the Secretary of Health and Human Services because the political fall out from so many Americans losing employer health coverage would be enormous.

Does anyone see this administration confronting the problems and fixing them?  Or, do you see more and more HHS waivers?


The Sound Off Sister was an Assistant United States Attorney for the Southern District of Florida, and special trial attorney for the Department of Justice, Criminal Division; a partner in the Florida law firm of Shutts & Bowen, and an adjunct professor at the University of Miami, School of Law. The Sound Off Sister offers frequent commentary concerning legislation making its way through Congress, including the health reform legislation passed in early 2010.


  1. TomL on December 7, 2010 at 4:16 am

    I see more waivers and would be willing to bet that the list is twice as long as reported by this transparent administration.

  2. ctrefugee on December 7, 2010 at 4:18 am

    it shows us again that gov't is not the end all be all they claim to be. as the saudi king said "we need to cut the head off of the snake". Repeal, replace

  3. GdavidH on December 7, 2010 at 5:55 am

     This all stinks of politics, pure and simple. Consider what we all really believe…The goal was always a single payer system/public option. What better way to achieve that than dumping all these employees from the insured catagory???

     The guys that penned this turd really had limited vision. They jumped down the hole and now it's caving in around them. OR, am I just a dummy and this was somehow the plan all along? You know they will have to address this issue and "correct" the language of the bill eventually. BAMM! public auction, for the poor and the kiddies of course.

  4. jnelchef on December 7, 2010 at 6:15 am

    How many millions of employees are covered by these waivers at this point?

  5. Lynn on December 7, 2010 at 6:17 am

    Does anyone remember that the first argument for Healthcare Reform was to lower costs? GdavidH, I agree that this Obamacare was planned totally to give us a single-payer system, further I think that Anthem/Bluecross thinks it will be the administrator of the single payer system when the govt. takes over, that's why they continue to ask for the highest premium rates. They'll play the devil now, so that everyone will embrace the govt. coming in to LOWER the rates and they will be the administrator. As for waivers simple graft and corruption of payback for political support. Furthermore as more and more receive waivers the pool to pay for this idiocy is smaller and smaller, thus more and more expensive.

  6. GdavidH on December 7, 2010 at 1:50 pm


     Very interesting. Remember Blue cross/ Blue shield was originally THE non-profit health insurer before it went public? 

     And you are strengthening my argument that the language of the bill will need to be corrected. Could this actually cause the insurers to compete for administering the system? 

  7. ErnieDuran on December 7, 2010 at 2:22 pm

    Do any of you remember the arguments with family and friends who supported this piece of legislation?  You mean to tell me that once this bill was passed all of those Democratic supporters are now jumping off ship?  I feel like I'm taking crazy pills!  Maybe we're just the ones on the outside who "need" health-care and the folks on the inside can do without.  Just the way our leaders want it.

  8. Lynn on December 8, 2010 at 2:11 am

    GdavidH, First off, we need to either repeal or defund the bill. It will be almost impossible to correct anything. It is a massive restructering of everything to do with healthcare. The reason, I am so down on Anthem is that in many states there is no competition, they are the Only insurance co. you can get ie Rhode Island. So, they truly could manipulate the market and drive up prices. It was not so apparent in CT because we had competition in co. But, Obamacare is Machiavellian, all the expensive stuff is loaded in the first few years, covering all preexisting conditions, excessive mandates, etc. without making it affordable for the insurance co. like selling across state lines to encourage competition and choice of coverage instead of the mandates. Thus the companies will grow broke and drop out. Anthem is raising their premiums wherever they can so that they will have a surplus to draw on until no one's left. I wish there could be competition, but Obamacare has destroyed it.


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