Okay, What Is It About This That I’m Not Understanding?

Union leaders note that under the law, workers whose family income is less than four times the poverty line will qualify for subsidies in the form of tax credits to obtain health insurance in the exchanges, with insurance sold by for-profit, nonprofit and cooperative companies. The union leaders say they want similar treatment — for unionized workers to qualify for those tax credits to help finance their Taft-Hartley insurance plans, which covers about 20 million workers and retirees.

“We just want to be treated like equals — we don’t want special treatment,” Mr. Taylor said. “An employer will say, ‘O.K., your plan costs about $10,000 a year. Let me get this straight. I only pay a $2,000 penalty if I drop you. That’s an $8,000 saving for me.’ That’s actually going to happen all over this country.”

Unions’ Misgivings on Health Law Burst Into View, Steven Greenhouse and Jonathan Martin, New York Times, today

Because of Obamacare, an employer will say, “O.K., your plan costs about $10,000 a year. Let me get this straight. I only pay a $2,000 penalty if I drop you. That’s an $8,000 saving for me.”? That’s actually going to happen all over this country?

Why, then, haven’t those employers said years ago, “O.K., your plan costs about $10,000 a year. Let me get this straight. If I drop your plan, that’s a $10,000 saving for me.”? Why hasn’t this actually been happening all over this country, for years?

Well, it has, of course, except when union contracts prevent it, or where the employer thinks healthcare insurance is a benefit that it makes economic sense to provide as part of employee compensation–a tax-exempt part.

Why is it suddenly more attractive to these companies to save $8,000 a year per employee than it has been for those companies to save $10,000 a year per employee?

C’mon, y’all.  Explain this to me.  What is it about this issue that I’m not understanding?

Seriously.

 

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