Rep. Collins issues statement on CBO report on Obamacare
Congressman Chris Collins (NY-27) released the following statement regarding today’s report by the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office that determines ObamaCare will reduce the number of full-time workers by approximately 2.3 million people through 2021.
“This report confirms what I have long believed, that ObamaCare is a flawed law and a drag on our economy. Americans have already begun to experience the devastating economic impact of ObamaCare. In New York’s 27th Congressional District constituents have shared with me stories of reduced hours and small business owners have told me they are afraid to grow and expand because of the uncertainty ObamaCare brings.
Already faced with increased premiums and higher deductibles, this report shows that ObamaCare is doing nothing to help our nation’s already struggling middle class. We cannot allow ObamaCare to slow economic growth and cost 2.3 million American jobs, as the Congressional Budget Office report predicts. This report makes it clear that our nation must address ObamaCare, and place a priority on reining in federal spending, so that we can empower our middle class and get Americans back to work.”
This is the latest revelation in the great "we have to pass it to see what's in it" saga. However, Republicans screwed up the response to a very revealing report. The director of the CBO testified that the ACA will result in an aggregate loss of work hours in the labor force equivalent to 2.3 million jobs. Although the economic impact is the same as the loss of those jobs, the right, Collins included, jumped out with the narrative that 2.3 million folks would lose their jobs. This allowed the White House and liberal media to rightly call them out on a false claim. Then the same White House and liberal media rolled out the absurd notion that this was good news! The CBO was very specific that the law was a disincentive for workers to maintain full time or additional employment because progressive subsidies make it more cost effective for them to work less. In other words as the White House put it, it allowed folks to "pursue their dreams" by working part time or not at all while the rest of us who are pursuing stability, solid retirement plans, and advancement through hard work, are subsidizing those dreamers. America, your government has handed you a turd sandwich and told you that it is delicious AND nutritious.
Here's the thing I don't see being discussed about the CBO report.
The projection of the CBO is that people will say, "hey, I no longer have to work full time, so I won't."
Let's say I own a widget factory. I need you to work 40 hours a week to produce X number of widgets. If you work only 30 hours a week, we're not meeting our customer's demand for widgets.
You come to me and say, "I'm no longer going to work 40 hours a week."
My response: Work the hours you're scheduled, or you're fired.
Of course, in some jobs, with some valuable employees, employers will naturally negotiate or accommodate if possible, but in most jobs, an employer needs a full-time employee for a reason and if an employee opts out of being full time, he's probably opting out of being employed by that company. In that case, somebody eager to work full time is hired. And there's no job lost, no production lost, no hours lost.
Which makes me question the veracity of the CBO report.
The other assumption of the CBO I find troubling is the assumption that lots of people only work to get health insurance. If that's true, it speaks sad volumes about the work ethic in America today.
If I'm correct the CBO also factors in employers doing the cutting of hours to keep some employees under the 29 hour threshold. Your Widget analogy is correct but it is only one example of an array of business models forced to adapt to ACA or pay penalties. The law has shifted the paradigm of the American business model.
Howard - you're questioning the work ethic of those who work just so they can have affordable health insurance? Why not question the work ethic of those who work only so that they can afford to pay rent or their mortgage? Or those who work only to be able to afford to eat?
Questioning the ethics of those who choose to work so that they and their loved ones can live better (or even healthier) is, well, questionable...
I confess - I work for money. I won't do *anything* for money (nor, like Meatloaf, for love), but as I've chosen a certain lifestyle that requires a certain amount of money to keep up, I work. My employer and I have a deal - I come to work and perform the tasks he asks of me, and he pays me.... He pays me, and I perform the tasks he requires of me. It is a very ethical arrangement from both sides.
Sure, I may not be an artist, author or actor creating great pieces of art. I'm not even a journalist who discovered a gaping chasm and created a well read and well regarded website to fill that chasm. But I am an ethical individual who can and does work so I can afford the things I like - and there's not a darn thing wrong with that.
The lay-off culture at the turn of the century created a new employee category. Workers who were laid-off just-shy of their full-retirement eligibility date and had to find new jobs to fill the wage gap until reaching retirement age and retain health insurance. Suggesting that those who fell victim to a cynical move on the part of corporate (and non-corporate) America are demonstrating a sub-standard work ethic is pretty lame. I was screwed-over by a local school district that didn't want to pay my retirement. I went back to work, as did many in my same boat, and I'd welcome someone pointing out any deficiencies in my work ethic. I doubt my fellow greed-victims are any less eager to be able to retire at 65, 67 or whatever age retirement is financially feasible. After years of paying into Medicaid through my paycheck and half my Genesee County tax bill, you can bet your bottom dollar I won't be paying some fat-ass corporate health insurance CEO's bonus if I don't have to!
It would really be nice if the people that represented us (and Collins certainly is not my representative) would learn basic reading comprehension. That report did NOT state that the ACA would cost 2.3 million jobs.... It stated that an estimated 2.3 million people would stop working or work less due to their insurance not being tied to employment.
I have my health insurance through my employer - it is a very good package, and I am thankful to my employer for including it as part of my compensation package. However, years ago many of my coworkers lost their insurance due to a hostile takeover of the company. COBRA couldn't even come into play as the original legal entity ceased to exist. Linking health insurance to employment, as beneficial as it may be and may have been to me personally, is illogical and causes inefficiencies. Imagine the same setup for your car or home owners insurance - yeah, it'd be great I'd your employer offered them at a great rate as part of your compensation, but a solid link such as we've had in this country for many decades with health insurance makes little sense.
The ACA is helping to break that link, allowing many folks to retire since they no longer need to work to keep decent insurance (they still need to pay for it, but not be employed at Acme to get it). Others will be able to take that chance and start their own businesses since their insurance is not linked to their being employed by Acme. While others will opt to work part time as they will be able to get affordable insurance other than as a full-time employee.
Quite frankly, Rep. Collins should be ashamed of himself for this PR stunt of lies, and owes his constituents an apology.
Ms. Bea - Bradblog is a great site!
Rep. Collins needs to start reading, instead of just spewing the Republican party line.
That is not what the report says.
Read The Washington Post - Fact Checker
“The estimated reduction stems almost entirely from a net decline in the amount of labor that workers choose to supply, rather than from a net drop in businesses’ demand for labor, so it will appear almost entirely as a reduction in labor force participation and in hours worked relative to what would have occurred otherwise rather than as an increase in unemployment (that is, more workers seeking but not finding jobs) or underemployment (such as part-time workers who would prefer to work more hours per week).”
In other words Jay, the ACA allows me to pursue my dream to write a novel and not worry about additional income to care for my healthcare needs because someone not as insightful as I who works full time will pay for it....
"CBO estimates that the ACA will reduce the total number of hours worked, on net, by about 1.5 percent to 2.0 percent during the period from 2017 to 2024, almost entirely because workers will choose to supply less labor --- given the new taxes and other incentives they will face and the financial benefits some will receive."