Fleming on Not Reading 10,535 Pages of Obamacare Regs: ‘They’re Incomprehensible’

October 15, 2013 - 3:14 PM

Rep. John Fleming

Rep. John Fleming (R-La.) (AP photo)

(CNSNews.com) – When CNSNews.com asked Rep. John Fleming (R-La.) if he had read all of the 10,535 pages of final regulations published by the administration to implement Obamacare in the Federal Register, he said he had not and described them as “incomprehensible.”

“Well, of course, I voted against [Obamacare], and I have not read all the rules and regulations,” Fleming told CNSNews.com earlier this month at the Capitol. “They’re extremely complex.

“An average person even with a law degree or a medical degree like me can’t understand them,” Fleming said. “They’re incomprehensible.”

When asked if he was surprised by the large number of pages of regulations, Fleming said he thought the number would get bigger.

“I don’t think that 10,000 pages is going to end,” Fleming said. “I think it’s going to grow over time as long as this bill continues to be in place.”

Since Congress passed -- without one Republican vote -- the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) and the Health Care and Education Reconciliation Act (HCERA) in March 2010, various federal agencies have issued 109 final regulations totaling 10,535 pages of rules.

The entire exchange between CNSNews.com and Fleming follows:

CNSNews.com: I’ve been asking the people who voted for Obamacare, in other words Democrats, about the 10,535 pages of final regulations that are in the Federal Register.  And I’ve asked them have you read all those regulations and, of course, they don’t want to answer at all. So I wanted to ask you that same question.

Fleming: “Well, of course, I voted against it, and I have not read all the rules and regulations. They’re extremely complex. An average person even with a law degree or a medical degree like me can’t understand them. They’re incomprehensible. And so we have to depend on people who have very special training just to explain how the exchanges work, how do the subsidies work, and after a couple questions to them, their third answer is usually we haven’t got that information. Businesses that are reaching out to consultants that part of the information is not available. We don’t know. We don’t have an interpretation. So it’s both complex and also there’s just a lot of questions that can’t be answered.”

CNSNews.com: “Are you surprised at that number: 10,535?”

Fleming: “Not at all considering the complexity of the underlying law. It leaves so much room for decisions and rules and regulations from HHS. I don’t think that 10,000 pages is going to end. I think it’s going to grow over time as long as this bill continues to be in place.”