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Friday, Nov 28, 2014
Editorials

Obamacare punishing nation’s workforce

Published:

If Washington Democrats give a hoot about their election prospects, not to mention the nation’s economy, they will respond to the latest Congressional Budget Office report by promptly agreeing to overhaul Obamacare.

The report documents what has been clear to most business owners: The Affordable Care Act is a job killer.

The nonpartisan CBO estimates the massive government program will reduce the number of full-time workers by 2.5 million through 2021.

Part of this is because some workers who will be provided care under the act will choose not to work, or to work fewer hours. Full-time employment is typically required for employer coverage.

But in 2015 Obamacare will begin imposing a penalty on those companies that employ 50 or more full-time workers and don’t provide health-care coverage.

The CBO logically estimates the provision will cause many businesses to limit their hiring.

The office also believes it will result in cuts in wages as businesses pass on the cost of any penalties to workers.

As The New York Times reports, the CBO also estimates the law would cause employment-based health coverage to decrease between 6 million and 7 million each year from 2016 through 2014.

We think this is just the tip of the economy-bashing impacts of a law full of burdensome regulations and fees, including a medical device tax particularly harmful to manufacturers in our region.

This is what happens when Washington crafts top-down solutions with little input from the people and enterprises affected.

Democrats should see that “fewer jobs, less coverage” is not a winning slogan and begin working with Republicans on a health-care strategy that has more concern for private enterprise and the economy.

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