November 29 2010
It's Hard to Admit When You're Wrong
The 1099 rule of ObamaCare was a bad idea from the get-go. I've already written about its disastrous potential here and here and here. But today the Senate is voting on two motions that could repeal this specific provision from the health care reform.
From the beginning, many voices from the business community opposed this rule. I had to wonder why Congress included it. It will create a mountain range of paperwork across the country, slowing our already slow economic recovery. And on top of that, it is unrealistic that the IRS has the capacity to handle the coming inundation of 1099 forms.
But then again, it's possible that Congress included this messy 1099 rule because many of the members who voted for it didn't read it or didn't understand it. They could make things right today, by voting for the Johanns Motion or the Baucus Motion, but these will need a two-thirds majority to pass. This is unlikely.
It's hard to admit when you've made a mistake, especially when that mistake was the sloppy passage of a major piece of legislation. Here's one take on the undoing of the rule from the Pacific Coast Business Times:
Its suspension also will lend support to arguments that "Obamacare" was shoved down America's throat through budget reconciliation and that it should be fully repealed.
The Senate should take this risk - the risk of lending support to the repeal movement - for the greater good of being sensible. I think Americans would rather be represented by people who are willing to admit a mistake than people who refuse to listen and instead push on stubbornly and blindly in the wrong direction.
Even supporters of ObamaCare should support repeal of the 1099 rule; it would make the reform slightly less horrible.