Friday, February 19, 2021

Enabling Virginia government 'entry without delay' into your home

One of the earliest parts of the Affordable Care Act to get repealed and never replaced was the 1099 provision. Section 9006 onerously and vastly broadened the reporting requirements of payments over $600. It was repealed before it ever went into effect. Even the Obama White House celebrated this fix to a problem it helped create. They had no choice; the public outcry was obvious and overwhelming.

The Virginia General Assembly is giving serious consideration to passing a law that is at least as overreaching.

There is much change that full Democratic control in Richmond has brought. Much of it is objectionable, but not necessarily immediately encroaching on one's own personal liberty. (For instance, firearms limits on domestic abusers hopefully do not apply to most people, problematic though they may be given the case law.) Even such very limited consolation is entirely absent from one law that would resemble the overreach of the federal 1099 provision and go much further.

SB 1310 and HB 2032 would all extend employment law to cover anyone in Virginia who hires anyone else no matter how short-term, temporary, or personal the reason for that employment may be. Further, it near literally opens the doors of one's home by authorizing the Virginia “Health Department ‘to enter without delay’ the home/premises and ‘to inspect, investigate, and take samples’ at that home and ‘all pertinent conditions, structures… and materials therein, and to question privately any such employer, owner, operator, agent, or employee.’” The Family Foundation has been rightly sounding the alarm about this legislation. I wrote about a similar bill a few weeks ago, before crossover.

This is an unacceptable, immediate, and wide-ranging threat. If you want to motivate people to consider immediately moving out of the state, this kind of legislation could do that. While this legislation should be subject to constitutional litigation and struck down, most of the people this would affect (i.e. everyone) do not have the means to launch a massive legal battle against their own state government that has decided it can control absolutely whatever it wants.

This is what happens when the nondiscrimination agenda knows no bounds and defies common sense. Is it really necessary to conform one's home to industrial safety standards, provide health benefits and retirement, and comply with union election laws in order to hire a babysitter or caretaker for an elderly parent? Should Health Department officials be allowed to enter your home at will because you didn't read up on the Davis-Bacon law? Must one now calculate in time for family and medical leave when hiring a handyman to work on a house project?

Those who support this legislation may ask in response, Should people be allowed to discriminate?

We've let that word get away from us to the point that people think it means ‘being racist,’ so most people think, ‘No, we shouldn't allow discrimination.’ An earlier meaning of discrimination was simply to tell right from wrong. Should we consider it wrong to be Black? No, that would be racist. Should we be allowed to consider it not a good fit for a Christian family to have an atheist for a babysitter? Yes. Should an elderly woman be allowed to prefer a woman over a man to help her bathe? Yes. These bills, that have already passed their first chamber, would make those things illegal in the name of prohibiting discrimination, and they include some sharp teeth for enforcement.

Not every individual who hires someone needs to be considered an “employer.”

If the Virginia General Assembly passes these bills, it is most definitely time to either hire different legislators or hire a different state to control the laws under which we live. And if you don't think people will leave a state over the laws it enacts, ask California, New York and Illinois if they will. Before those on the left start rejoicing at conservatives leaving the state, remember, even California elects a Republican governor once in a while. This legislation gives any administration the power to enter anyone's home at any time if anyone in the home has paid anyone any amount to do anything.

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