Obamacare to Have Negative Impact on Small Businesses?

Business leaders and economists say the nation is facing uncertainty as it awaits the Supreme Court’s ruling on the constitutionality of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, also known as Obamacare.  Most think this health care law is not the answer to the insurance woes of small businesses.  Paul Howard of the Center for Medical Progress at the Manhattan Institute for Policy Research urges Congress to come up with another health care reform with incremental and less expensive insurance coverage.  Gail Johnson of Rainbow Station, a children recreation franchise, wants Congress to give employers flexibility.  Book author Puzder says, “Upholding Obamacare would create a certainty that health care expenses for American businesses will go up, job creation will decline and the current economic malaise will continue or, more likely, accelerate.”  Should the court uphold the law, businesses may be forced to choose between profits and people, as reported in a Newsmax.com article.

The Supreme Court’s ruling on the constitutionality of President Barack Obama’s health care law may remove some of the uncertainty that businesses have about the law’s effects on their bottom line, but whether that will translate into jobs is another question.

Economists and business leaders have expressed concern over the job-killing aspects of the law since it was enacted in March, 2010, particularly the individual mandate that requires people to have healthcare coverage beginning in 2014.

Paul Howard, a senior fellow and director of the Center for Medical Progress at the Manhattan Institute for Policy Research, told Congress last year that there is a critical need for healthcare reform.

“Unfortunately, the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act is not the solution to our healthcare woes,” he said in an appearance before the House Committee on Education and the Workforce. “If anything, the Affordable Care Act ‘doubles down’ on many of the worst aspects of our current system, while adding new cost pressures and problems that will serve as a drag on economic growth and job creation for years to come.”

“Congress will have to go back to the drawing board on health care reform, and should focus on incremental and less expensive options for expanding coverage and improving health care delivery through consumer choice and competition.”

The court is expected to make its decision on the Affordable Care Act — probably the most hig-profile cases it has dealt with since Bush vs. Gore in 2000 — within the next two weeks.

Gail Johnson, the founder and CEO of Rainbow Station, a nationally accredited preschool and school-age recreation franchise, said that “anything short of full repeal of the law … will continue to create uncertainty and higher costs for employers such as myself in a still recovering economy.”

“However, we need to implement intelligent health care legislation that the country can afford and that gives employers flexibility they need,” Johnson added. “We need Congress to pass legislation that balances the need to improve access to coverage together with controlling the rising costs of care.” …

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