A San Antonio businessman is a plaintiff in the latest federal lawsuit challenging the legality of Obamacare, 1200 WOAI news has learned.
J. Allen Tharp, owner of the Lion & Rose Pubs in San Antonio, is among several business owners and self employed individuals who claim in the lawsuit, filed in U.S. District Court of the District of Columbia, that the fact that Texas is not participating in the so called ‘Insurance Exchanges’ established under the health care law leaves him without options, and will force him to make expenditures which will damage his company’s ‘fiscal strength’ through no fault of his own.
“The Restaurants are injured by the IRS rule, because it has the effect of either subjecting them to monetary sanctions or requiring them to alter their behavior to avoid these sanctions,” the lawsuit reads.
Tharp’s claim is that had the state participated in the ‘Exchanges,’ he would have had recourse, but since Texas is one of 33 states which have decided not to participate, his business is being injured by government action and he has no opportunity to mitigate that injury.
Although Tharp doesn’t make this claim, other plaintiffs in the lawsuit, including a bank in Kansas, are also claiming that ‘certain morally offensive provisions of the ACA (Affordable Care Act, the legal name for Obamacare), including its definition of contraceptive and abortifacient drugs as ‘preventative services) have forced the companies to drop health insurance to their employees, placing them in the crosshairs of the infamous ’employer mandate,’ forcing them to either participate in a system they find morally objectionable, or pay ruinous financial penalties.
Tharp and the other plaintiffs also claim that a ‘Catch 22’ in Obamacare force them to comply with the law when they otherwise would be exempt.
“The availability of the subsidy also effectively triggers the assessable payments under the employer mandate,” the lawsuit reads. Specifically, the Act provides that any employer with 50 or more full-time employees will be subject to an ’assessable payment’ if it does not offer them the opportunity to enroll in affordable, employer-sponsored coverage. But the payment is only triggered if at least one full-time employee enrolls in a plan offered through an Exchange, for which an ‘applicable premium tax credit is allowed or paid.’ Thus, if no federal subsidies are available in a state because the state has not established its own Exchange, then employers in that state may offer their employees non-compliant insurance, or no insurance at all, without being exposed to any assessable payments under the Act.”
But the lawsuit says the IRS is ‘ignoring that regulation’ and is ordering the Treasury to disburse subsidies in the 33 states which don’t have Exchanges despite the fact that that is forbidden by Obamacare. And the existence of these subsidies, according to the lawsuit, force Tharp and other employers into the position of being potentially forced to pay huge penalties due to activities which are completely beyond their control.
The lawsuit seeks to have the IRS rule, and the ‘end around’ regarding states without exchanges, declared unconstitutional, which would essentially make Obamacare unenforceable.