Bill would suspend ACA’s individual mandate penalties

Republican Study Committee Chairman Rep. Steve Scalise (R-La.) introduced legislation on Tuesday that would retroactively suspend individual mandate penalties under the Affordable Care Act until 2016.

Scalise and Rep. Susan Brooks (R-Ind.) introduced the Freeing Americans from Inequitable Requirements Act in an effort to mirror the Obama administration’s recent suspension of the ACA’s employer mandate.

Scalise said it’s inequitable to delay provisions of the ACA for special interest groups and businesses without providing the same relief to individuals.

“President Obama has unilaterally delayed his unworkable and unaffordable healthcare law at least 18 times, and it is only fair to simultaneously provide the same relief to the millions of hard-working Americans that he is offering to the politically connected,” Scalise said. “By repeatedly delaying key components of his signature law, President Obama has acknowledged that his healthcare law is failing to fulfill the many promises that were made. It’s time for him to let American families off the hook as he’s already done for special interests and corporations.”

The FAIR Act would delay the ACA’s individual mandate whenever the employer mandate is delayed. The employer mandate requires employers with more than 50 employees who work at least 30 hours a week to provide health coverage or face a penalty.

“The Affordable Care Act continues to make life harder for Americans struggling to pay their bills and support their families in a tough economy,” Brooks said. “Sadly, President Obama won’t provide individuals the same relief he’s repeatedly given to corporations and special interest groups….”