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The Hill - Obamacare Costing Wages, Hours at Work

Op-Ed

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By Reps Larry Bucshon, Phil Roe, and Trey Radel

As the Obamacare "train wreck" unfolds we continue to learn of the unintended, unnecessary, and burdensome consequences of a law passed without a single bipartisan vote in Congress.
Despite the President's promise of lower health care costs, premiums are rising for families and estimates show that because of Obamacare, over 7 million Americans will lose their employer provided insurance.

In addition to losing their health care coverage, Americans are also seeing lost hours at work because of the tax increases and regulations associated with Obamacare. The bottom line is the Affordable Care Act is not affordable.

It's not fair to you, your kids and grandkids that Obamacare will cut your wages, hours and may even cost you your job. How can you care for your family when Obamacare is putting your job on the line?

During a time when unemployment is high, Obamacare is dismantling the opportunity for even more Americans to find good paying jobs. Americans rely on these jobs to support their family, invest in their community, and save for their future.

Recently, President Obama's top healthcare official, Secretary of Health and Human Services Kathleen Sebelius, told the Education and the Workforce Committee that the stories regarding employees losing jobs and wages because of the health care law are just "speculation."

It's not speculation to those who have already seen their workweek cut back to less than 30 hours or worse, lost their job because of Obamacare. Whether the Administration wants to recognize it or not, this is the new reality for so many American families.

Under this law, a full time employee will now be defined as someone who works 30 hours a week. Individuals who depend on full-time employment are having their hours and paycheck slashed so their employer can afford to stay in business. This dangerous and arbitrary new definition of a full time employee, forces too many to accept part-time work all while losing their health care coverage.

We have heard examples of this happening across the country. The city of Long Beach, California is pairing back hours for most of its 1,600 employees to avoid layoffs and reductions in city services. The largest movie theatre chain, Regal Cinemas, which operates in 38 states, is making a similar move. Just a few weeks ago, a school district in Fort Wayne, Indiana announced that over 600 teaching aides and cafeteria workers would have their hours cut to 25 hours so that schools can stay afloat.

These are real wages being lost by families who rely on them to pay for gas, groceries and their mortgage payments.

The consequences of the law are also a reality for companies giving up on expanding and creating jobs in their local communities. To pay for this monstrosity, the architects of Obamacare levied 21 new job-killing taxes, fees, and penalties, costing businesses in America over $600 billion.

According to the National Federation of Independent Business, the nation's leading small business advocate, the Health Insurance Tax alone will cost up to 262,000 jobs. In addition to this, 3.2 million jobs in the franchise industry will be at risk because of Obamacare mandates, according to the Hudson Institute.

The effects of this law are real and they are damaging to you and your family -- a fact the White House refuses to recognize.

We should be focused on doing everything we can to help Americans find meaningful employment. We can do this by removing this unnecessary, overcomplicated burden and instead having a fair system that allows you to care for your family.

Bucshon represents Indiana's 8th congressional district in the House of Representatives since 2011. Roe represents Tennessee's 1st congressional district since 2009. Radel represents Florida's 19th congressional district since 2013. Bucshon and Roe are medical doctors.


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