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Washington Examiner: Obamacare leaves unions in a bad spot

Published: February 22, 2013

The administration is resisting. Those subsidies would cause the cost of Obamacare to balloon at the very moment officials are trying to keep already skyrocketing costs under control. They already threw Big Labor a big bone by exempting union-run health insurance plans from a high-end “Cadillac tax” until 2018. For everyone else, the tax kicks in this year.

Moreover, if the administration gives in to Big Labor on the subsidies, it's going to have to explain to other employers why they cannot get the same break.

But the White House owes Big Labor. Unions helped to deliver the key battleground states like Ohio, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin to Obama last year. And with overall union membership falling to a mere 11.3 percent of the workforce in 2012, and to just 6.6 percent in the private sector, labor leaders can ill-afford any change that causes members to slip away faster. They're going to press the White House, and hard.

This is the umpteenth chapter of why Obamacare was a bad idea. The real-world consequences — like what the unions are now wrangling with — are only now becoming apparent. To those of us who warned about this from the start, there isn't much satisfaction in pointing out that the unions did it to themselves.

— The Washington Examiner