Skip to content

Democrats’ Health Reform Bad for Working Americans

October 29, 2009

Today, the White House is set to host another publicity event that is designed to obscure the fact that employers—especially small businesses—do not support the Democrats’ health care reform. 

Here is a small sampling of why employers find the Democrats’ plans “frightening.”
(Emphasis added)

Small business owners on Democrats’ health care reform proposals:

“There’s so much trepidation out there. The thing I’m struggling with is how the potential government takeover of health care coupled with impending taxes will impact my company.” (W. Michael Brown, owner Olympus Imported Auto Parts, in Virginia)

“We’d love to step out on the limb and hire more people just to get more folks working, but things are so frightening, and number one on that list is health care. Second is taxes.” (Mr. Redman, Vice President of Bear Electric Inc. of Donald, Ore)

Business leaders on the Democrats’ government-run health care proposals:

The public plan has, in our view, many problems. It will likely simply shift, rather than reduce, costs and will stifle the innovation that we need to continue improving our health care system…[It] will likely reimburse providers at a sub-market rate, forcing private plans to compensate by paying higher rates.” (Business Roundtable, President John Castellani)

“We don’t want to take the 175 million people that are getting insurance through their employers and throw them out the window.” (Verizon, Chairman Ivan Seidenberg)

“The government does not have a good record on managing costs.” (Eastman Kodak, CEO Antonio Perez)

Employer groups on Democrats’ health care reform proposals:

“H.R. 3200 has never been about moderating healthcare and insurance cost increases so that small businesses (and others) could expand their coverage to additional employees.  With just a net 3 million new lives covered by employers and with $124 billion in employer penalties (and $59 billion in individual penalties) channeled toward government-run programs, it’s clear this bill is little more than a huge indirect tax increase for small employers. Addressing health care is critical for small business.  But ‘reform’ can make things worse rather than better and H.R. 3200 is an example.” (National Federation of Independent Business)

“Employees ultimately bear the cost of their health insurance through lower employment, depressed wages, depressed productivity, and loss of economic opportunities.” (National Federation of Independent Business)

The Democrats’ proposal, “will not increase coverage – rather it will lead to out-sourcing, off-shoring, hiring of independent contractors, spinning-off small new companies, reducing workforces, and reducing wages.” (U.S. Chamber of Commerce)

Employer mandates of any kind amount to a tax on jobs.  We can think of few more dangerous steps to take in the middle of our present recession.” (National Retail Federation)

Non-partisan analysts confirm these workers and employers should fear Democrats’ health plan:

“For example, some smaller employers would be inclined to terminate their existing coverage, and companies with low average salaries might find it to their—and their employees’—advantage to end their plans, thereby allowing their workers to qualify for heavily subsidized coverage through the Exchange.  We estimate that such actions would collectively reduce the number of people with employer-sponsored health coverage by about 12 million.” (CMS Office of the Actuary)

“However, the existence of an Exchange and income-related premium subsidies may prompt some large employers of mostly low-wage workers to drop their coverage.  We assume that the majority of employers fitting this description would ultimately drop their insurance offering…”  (CMS Office of the Actuary)

“For the smallest firms (10 or fewer employees), the offer rate [of health insurance] is estimated to drop from 47 percent to 36 percent.” (CMS Office of the Actuary)

Non-partisan analysts on the impact of Democrats’ health care reform proposals will have on jobs and wages:

Employees largely bear the cost of… play-or-pay fees in the form of lower wages.” (Congressional Budget Office)