Repeal of PT hours needed in Obamacare

While the White House rolled back until 2015 a mandate that employers offer health insurance to any employee working 30 hours or more per week — or else — this didn’t roll back the cut in hours for part-timers everywhere.
Apr 17, 2014


The loss in hours for folks who previously worked 35-39 hours per week has proven substantial as employees — many of whom work in service industries such as restaurants and retail shops — have suffered as their hours have been slashed to below 30. Many workers have since had to cobble together two or three part-time jobs to maintain their prior levels of income.

An estimated 2.6 million workers with annual incomes of less than $30,000 have been affected by the 30-hour rule.

The hours rule was part of the Affordable Care Act, which would levy a fine against employers who don’t offer health benefits to workers who work at least 30 hours per week. 

Congressmen and women — some, at least — have recognized that this provision of Obamacare needs to be thrown out the window.

Legislation initially introduced last June has made its way through the U.S. House of Representatives and now rests with the U.S. Senate. HR 2575 is dubbed the Save American Workers Act of 2014. It would amend the Internal Revenue Code, as amended by the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, to redefine “full-time employee” as being an employee who works at least 40 hours per week. 

Our U.S. Rep. Bill Huizenga, R-Zeeland, rightly supported the measure, saying that the “poorly designed rule is responsible for slashing take-home pay of those who can least afford it by forcing employers to cut jobs and hours or risk triggering the law’s 30-hour penalty.”

His was one of 248 votes cast for the legislation. Another 179 votes were cast against it.

Contact Michigan’s U.S. senators, Carl Levin and Debbie Stabenow, and let them know how this provision of Obamacare has affected our economy and our livelihoods. Stabenow may be reached by phone at 202-224-4822; and by mail at 133 Hart Senate Office Bldg., Washington, DC 20510. Levin may be reached by phone at 202-224-6221; and by mail at 269 Russell Senate Office Bldg., Washington, DC 20510.

Help stop the bleeding of American workers and support this legislation.

Our Views reflects the majority opinion of the members of the Grand Haven Tribune editorial board: Kevin Hook, Cheryl Welch, Matt DeYoung, Alex Doty and Fred VandenBrand. What do you think? E-mail us a letter to the editor to or log-in to our website and leave a comment below.



The 30 hour rule was about as brilliant an idea as the Cash for Clunkers program.


Don't get me started on the C4C program. Talk about a tax on the low income...lets take thousands of decent used cars out of circulation.

Harry Kovaire

Headline should read:

Repeal of Obamacare needed.


LOL !! I hope everyone who voted for Pinocchio, Debbie Stab a cow, Levin and all the rest who are soooo concerned about your well being experiences maximum pain in the wallet, stress and all the shite you were warned about. Keep voting for fools like this in congress and the Half White house, vote with your eyes instead of your brain, brilliant job !


I agree. They voted for this, now live with it. There are consequences and responsibility when we vote. What stinks is that those who didn't vote for this, knew what was going to happen, tried to give warnings to the failed socialist policies also have to live with it. It's really bad and only going to get worse. Think before you vote.


I thought Obama care is free.

Real estate maven

I agree with Harry. Repeal this hideous piece of legislation entirely. Are the American people truly foolish enough to believe that money for this thing doesn't have to come from somewhere???

And "help stop the bleeding of Americans and support this legislation"??? How about stop the blood LETTING from the Americans who work and pay taxes, taxes in excess of what they take out of the system. Unintended consequences, my friends at the editorial board. Change you can count on from the biggest joke the Oval Office has seen since Jimmy Carter. At least he has Putin shaking in his shoes. LOL!!!!

Tri-cities realist

To think that the consequences of the 30 hour rule wouldn't decrease the hours worked, you must either think that the democrat authors of this provision of the ACA are either stupid, or just devious. While I don't agree with them often, I don't think they are stupid. It's just part of their plan to eventually go to single payer. I can hear it now, "while the ACA has exceeded everyone's expectations, there still are tens of millions that do not have health insurance, we must go to single payer to make sure everyone is covered." Don't say you weren't warned, many have been saying this for years.


D'oh! Did anyone ever think that the businesses doing this are manipulating the system by either: a.) Using the rule as an excuse to bump a bunch of employees down a notch, saving money on wages, benefits, taxes, and getting rid of dead wood? or b.) They know this will often qualify employees to be eligible for health care subsidies - Voila! More corporate welfare. or c.) These businesses are hoping the country turns to single payer, because they are tired of being insurance experts on top of running a business?

Oh, and another thing I'd like to point out to the ignorant doofus's out there:

Obamacare was written primarily by the same guy who wrote up the nearly identical reform for Mitt Romney in Massachusetts, with one exception:


And, of course, surely by now you genius's know that Obamacare is a based on a conservative plan written by the Koch Bros-founded and funded Heritage Foundation in 1989, and actively promoted by a group of Republican Senators in 1993-94.


Funny how now that ACA is clearly becoming a failure in most Americans eyes, ole Lanning wants to try and link it back to the right and conservatives! Priceless.

Golly gee, tanks fer clearing dat one up fer us. U da best!


I've been posting this information for the past year. Where have you been?


And you have been completely wrong for the past year. Dems own this monster.... watch them run run run away as we approach the midterm elections!


Tell me again exactly which republicans voted this Affordable Health Care Mandate into law?

Tell me again about The Clinton health care plan, known officially as the Health Security Act, was a 1993 healthcare reform package proposed by the administration of President Bill Clinton (D) and closely associated with the chair of the task force devising the plan, First Lady of the United States Hillary Rodham Clinton..

You forgot to blame Bush too..


Tell me again how hypocritical, ignorant, devoid of any historical connection, and just plain whiny current Republicans are?

In February 1974, Republican President Richard Nixon proposed, in essence, today’s Affordable Care Act. Under Nixon’s plan all but the smallest employers would provide insurance to their workers or pay a penalty, an expanded Medicaid-type program would insure the poor and subsidies would be provided to low-income individuals and small employers.

In 1989, Stuart M. Butler of the conservative Heritage Foundation came up with a plan that would “mandate all households to obtain adequate insurance.”

Insurance companies loved Butler’s plan so much it found its way into several bills introduced by Republican lawmakers in 1993. Among the supporters were Senators Orrin Hatch (R-UT) and Charles Grassley (R-IA). Both now oppose the mandate under the Affordable Care Act. Newt Gingrich, who became Speaker of the House in 1995, was also a big proponent.

Romney’s heathcare plan in Massachusetts included the same mandate to purchase private insurance. “We got the idea of an individual mandate from [Newt Gingrich] and [Newt] got it from the Heritage Foundation,” said Romney, who thought the mandate “essential for bringing the health care costs down for everyone and getting everyone the health insurance they need.”

You ask about Bush. I can handle that. In 2003, Bush and the Republican Congress muscle-armed the passage of Medicare Part D, which was the largest expansion of a government social net since the 1960's - a massive unfunded program providing coverage prescription drugs to Medicare recipients. It originally was not supposed to cost more than $400 Billion, but within 2 months of passage, it was revealed that budget crunchers realized the program would actually cost $530 Billion. In other words, BUSH LIED to Congress and the American people, and the deliberate containment of this knowledge was tremendously controversial.

By the way, in case, you are interested, Medicare Part D was ENTIRELY UNFUNDED, added $318 Billion the Federal Debt in the last 10 years, and is projected to add another $852 billion to the Federal debt in the next 10 years.

Oh! Another thing!! Guess who voted for the entire Debt-Breaker????

The record also shows that such “deficit hawks” as the current House speaker, JOHN BOEHNER of Ohio; the current House majority leader, ERIC CANTOR of Virginia; and the current House Budget Committee chairman, PAUL RYAN of Wisconsin, voted for Medicare Part D all the way. Although out of Congress, the former speaker, Newt Gingrich, wrote a commentary in The Wall Street Journal on Nov. 20, 2003, urging all Republicans to vote yes.

It has been said there are lies, and there are dam lies. What wisdom!


It also has been said that 99% of Democrats give the rest a bad name.

Stop deflecting away from your beloved Affordable Careless Act by talking about Nixon in 74’, Butler in 89’, and Gingrich in 95’ because back then:

*The National debt was 980 billion (versus 17 Trillion today. Obama alone has added 6.1 Trillion to our debt since lying his way into office.)

*$1.49 per gallon fuel ($3.90 today)

*Unemployment was 5.5% (versus 7% today and 12%+ if you add people that have stopped looking for work and/or have fallen off unemployment benefit wagon.)

*The EPA was not attacking every component of our oil, natural gas, coal, and nuclear energy program like it is in this administration.

* The private sector industries, corporations, and individuals were not being attacked by our government like President Obama is ordering.

*Ranchers in Nevada were called hard working contributing Americans instead of domestic terrorist.

*Do you want me to keep going? Say the word.

We debate with you Lan because most of us feel you are smart enough to see common sense when presented to you and we recognize your passion and beliefs on many issues.

However, to add defiance to your ignorance as to how the ACA is destroying our entire health care system as we know it by adding unsustainable debt to our country, forcing experienced surgeons and specialist into retirement or different careers, the elimination of free market choices, and the ruining of the best health care system this planet has ever seen, by rambling about what happened on the Republican side 30-40 years ago is a near disorder of comprehension to what is happening today.

Your Country is on political, social, and economic FIRE and our government is turning on its people right in front of your eyes and you sit there like Baghdad Bob trying to convince us otherwise.


Although I am very gratified that you think I'm smart, sensible, and passionate enough to deign to debate with, I should inform you that the terms of that debate are not necessarily decided by you. A true debate requires assertions to be backed up with facts, figures, and statistics. I learned this from our regional treasure, Vladtheimp, who has prodded and poked me to be far more concise and measured in our debates. Your lists of prejudices, biases, and misinformation does not suffice. Let's see some research to back up your claims.

Until you do so, you're just another pompous windbag spewing nonsensical, hypocritical, shallow, callow, and erroneous points based on denial and ignorance.

I believe you to be too smart, reasoned, and passionate for that. Are you going to continue to prove me wrong?


Talk about being whiny. What did you cut and paste that info from Wikipedia? Maybe Republicans have "evolved" in their views. Or is that reserved for Democrats only? Sheesh!!


Nope T-Bone, these comments are inspired by my own pain & suffering as to what the hell I see happening to my country.

Make no mistake, I’m no friend to Republicans and I do not consider myself one, but as you can see with a two party oligarchy system, my options are limited.

“Step away from your links and write what you think” dyankee~

Lanivan beautifully written as your comment here is, dyankee, I think T-Bone's reply was to my comment. My apologies if I am wrong on the sequence of replies.


You do not appear to be very sharp. May I draw your attention to the links I provided. Do they say Wikipedia? No, they do not.

You seem awfully upset with me that I actually backed up my assertions with facts. Did you back up your assertion with facts? No, you did not.

You also seem to be in denial that Republicans could have been responsible for increasing the deficit and Federal Debt, and that Obamacare is really a Republican proposal, heavily promoted by Republicans over the years. Do you accept these historical facts and truths, like a reasoned person with critical thinking skills would? No, you do not.

Are you being a whiny wimp by complaining that I am whiny, rather than defending your position? Yes, you are.


Oh, I am extremely sharp. Evidently you do not seem to get the fact that when you call somebody whiny and then proceed to write a long diatribe with the very whininess you call someone else out for having, that that is being hypocritical. I accept historical facts for what they are and I am well versed in history, however, nobody gives a tinker's dam what happened 30-40 years ago today. I made the simple statement that it seems alright to you that when a Democrat politician changes his/her position over time that they "evolve", but to you a Republican politician can't do that. Keep your holier-than-thou critiques for someone who actually needs them. It seems also that you need to get out more so you don't have such a myopic ideology (i.e. Democrats = good, Republican = bad). Everyone can and does "evolve" during their lifetimes.

And Yankee, sorry if you thought my comment was directed to you. You (and Vlad) bring the levelheadedness to the board that is sorely needed.


No worries T-Bone. Hey Barry, you're not witnessing anger being stired up, only passion & and love of country. Ask Lani to provide you a link to explain the difference.

Barry Soetoro

I did say "allegedly". No way are you going to get Barry S. to ask Lani to provide a link to anything. No way.


But I have a passion and love for of country, too. Is yours right and mine wrong?


Passion and love of country is not measured in right or wrong, but is reflected in the quality of standards one sets for themselves.


Oh, you are a clever one! Take a screed based on distortions and falsehoods and pivot to a a discussion on applied ethics and morals. Utilitarianism versus Deontological ethics, anyone?


T-Bone - I love history, and have found in my political journey that getting a sense of the historical factors that impact on current events clarifies and defines. Of course, when you state that "nobody gives a tinker's dam what happened 30-40 years ago today.", you surely are giving the writing of the Constitution and the history of the Founding Fathers, from over 200 years ago, a pass.

I think you are probably referring to historical facts that you don't like. I agree that people can and, in my opinion, should attempt to evolve during their lifetimes - that's what makes things interesting and fresh. I would suggest that you are not actually arguing about people evolving, so much as you are upset that the facts about the Republican ties to Obamacare are not to your liking.

Oh, and by the way, I've been a registered Republican my whole adult life.

Tri-cities realist

You are still a registered Republican? No hypocrisy there...


I still consider myself a moderate centrist right leaning, common sense, Eisenhower/Teddy Roosevelt Republican.

I don't care how many of my rights they attempt to infringe, how much they attempt to intimidate/manipulate/coerce me to conform to their warped, dangerous, and destructive policies, or how hard they try to suppress my vote, I wouldn't vote Republican these days if the Koch Bros paid me.

Barry Soetoro

Way to go, L. All this anger you allegedly stirred up. To think you're too busy for a Beer Summit. I've already got the t-shirts picked out...just waiting on you.



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