In a local television interview yesterday, President Obama was taken aback when he learned that ObamaCare – the signature legislative achievement he doesn’t like to talk about – is hurting small businesses, the Weekly Standard reports. Based on his defensive response, it’s clear that President Obama must believe that – like the private sector – small businesses facing a maze of ObamaCare penalties, mandates, taxes and regulations are ‘doing fine.’ Unfortunately for the 20 million unemployed and underemployed Americans who are counting on small businesses to create jobs, they’re not. Here are a few recent reports on the impact ObamaCare is having on small businesses that the president must have missed:
- “Cheaper to Pay a Federal Fine…Than Try to Comply with All of the Regulations” “A local business leader told U.S. House Speaker John Boehner it would cost her company thousands to comply with all the regulations in the proposed national health care program. Laura Doerger-Roberts, president of Vinylmax, a Hamilton windows manufacturer that employs 170, said it would be cheaper to pay a federal fine of more than $340,000 and provide employee health care than try to comply with all of the regulations proposed in the proposed national health care program. … ‘We’ll be stuck with a ‘one-size fits all package’ and it will eliminate choice for employees,’ Doerger-Roberts said.” (Dayton Daily News, 5/12/12)
- “Might Consider Dropping Health Care Plans If the Law Remains in Place” “Sierra Bullets President and General Manager Pat Daly said his company might consider dropping health care plans if the law remains in place. ‘At Sierra we have looked at it. If it goes the way we believe it will, it would make sense for us to pay the fine and go,’ Daly said. ‘I can't imagine that being a better plan than what we have now. We have always prided ourselves on providing employee health care.’” (The Sedalia Democrat, 5/2/12)
- “The implementation of President Obama’s healthcare law and the requirements it might impose was tied for the third most common reason businesses were not hiring...Seventy-three percent of the businesses surveyed said the healthcare law is an obstacle to hiring new workers.” (The Hill, 4/16/12)
- “Forced to Pass Increased Health Plan Expenses Along to Their Employees” “The survey by the Milwaukee-based technology company…showed 76 percent of respondents expected the reforms to increase the health care spending in the coming years. …‘I’ve never seen anything the government does that doesn’t increase cost in some shape, form or fashion, so we fully expect that to increase our costs,’ said Ron Perkins, vice president of Doozer Software Inc. in Birmingham. ... Of the Zywave respondents, 63 percent said they’ll be forced to pass increased health plan expenses along to their employees, further depressing stagnant pay after years of recession.” (Birmingham Business Journal, 6/1/12)
- “A Massive Amount of Money...Dedicated Toward an Alphabet Soup’ of Regulations” “Carlisle, co-founder of Leveraged Developments as well as Our Health Connector, said: ‘The real problem is that the sheer complexity of the act creates a high cost and unpredictable environment for investors, so access to capital is greatly diminished by the complexity of the Affordable Care Act.’ Such complexity also burns up resources, he said. ‘A massive amount of money is dedicated toward an alphabet soup’ of regulations, said Carlisle. ‘... So the energy of the industry has shifted toward compliance.” (New Hampshire Union Leader, 5/27/12)
- “The Calculations Are Mind-Numbing” “The Internal Revenue Service form needed to claim the credit, Form 8941, requires a complex series of calculations. ‘The calculations are mind-numbing,’ says Jeffrey Berdahl, a certified public accountant with RLB Accountants, an Allentown, Pa., accounting firm whose clients include small businesses. Berdahl says his firm, whose partners collectively have decades of experience as CPAs, had to create a spreadsheet to help determine whether clients would be able to get a credit. But he said only a handful did, and received ‘a nominal amount’ of money back. For many, the credit was offset by the fees they had to pay their accountants.” (The Associated Press, 5/31/12)
If President Obama had spent more time engaging with Congress and less time focused on fake fights and tired gimmicks, he would have learned that ObamaCare was hurting small businesses from the 30 votes Republicans have taken to repeal, defund and dismantle the law to create a better environment for private-sector growth and job creation. Unlike the president, Republicans are listening to the American people who continue to oppose ObamaCare, and small business owners who say it is holding them back, and will continue fighting to fully repeal the law and give job creators the certainty they need to put more Americans back to work. That was our Pledge to America, and, as Speaker Boehner has reaffirmed, that remains our goal.