EIA estimates that total U.S. crude oil production declined by about 60,000 bopd in November compared with October.Think about that. Other reports suggest that greatest shale decline will be in the Eagle Ford.
GOP And Dems Agree On One Thing: Delay / Never Enact The ObamaCare Tax On Cadillac Health Care Plans
December 17, 2015: GOP figures out how to deep-six ObamaCare ... and the Dems play along. Bloomberg. Identical to the December 15, 2015, note that follows directly.
December 15, 2015: it looks like Congress agrees to delay three taxes that were key components of ObamaCare. is reporting:
The delays to the health care law’s
will be part of a larger tax break package that is expected to pass.
- medical device tax;
- so-called “Cadillac tax”; and,
- health insurance tax
The ObamaCare taxes have long faced bipartisan criticism. The first two -- on medical devices and high-end insurance plans -- were supposed to take effect in 2018, but would be delayed until 2020 if the deal is made final. The third, a levy imposed on health insurers that typically is passed onto customers in the form of higher premiums, would be suspended for a year.
Democratic leaders in Congress have been trying to do something about the Cadillac tax for quite a while. The end of the year has provided an opportunity to act, because of a much larger package of tax cuts that the White House and congressional leaders have been discussing for several weeks. That package would make permanent some unrelated tax breaks -- some (favored strongly by Republicans) for corporations and some (favored strongly by Democrats) for the working poor.The medical device tax was the third leg of the three-legged ObamaCare stool:
In just the last few days, Democratic leaders -- and, in particular, Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid -- insisted that any package include a two-year delay of the Cadillac tax, so that it takes effect in 2020 rather than 2018. And while Republican leaders are in no rush to do the Democrats or the unions any favors, they are hearing from business supporters who share labor's antipathy for the tax.
The GOP leaders have signaled their support for the Cadillac tax delay as part of the big tax package -- as long as it comes with a similar, two-year "pause" in a tax on the medical device industry. That's no problem for the Democrats, since many of them represent states or districts with large device makers -- and have been joining the GOP in its calls to delay or repeal it.
In the past, the White House has fought hard to defend both the Cadillac tax and medical device tax. But the president would have a difficult time vetoing a bill that includes tax relief for the working poor, given political circumstances. Among other things, the intense political opposition to the Cadillac tax means that it is unlikely to survive, in current form, past this administration anyway. Just last week, an amendment to eliminate Cadillac tax repeal as part of a broader proposal to repeal the Affordable Care Act passed by a vote of 90 to 10.
- employee mandate
- individual mandate (for those not covered by an employer)
- medical device tax
That leaves the third leg, a tax on medical devices, still delayed, and looks dead.