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The $2.6 Trillion Birthday Present

Press Release

Location: Washington, DC

Senator John Ensign today examined the impact of the $2.6 trillion health law during a Senate Finance Committee hearing. Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius testified on the effectiveness of the law while Senator Ensign questioned its cost to taxpayers and its many unintended consequences.

"Birthdays are cause for celebration, but the anniversary of $2.6 trillion worth of bad policy is hardly something to applaud," said Ensign. "This law fails to address the number one problem facing health care and that's cost. Unfortunately, this law does accomplish three things: higher healthcare costs, higher taxes and fewer jobs.

"I traveled across our state to speak with Nevadans before this law was voted on and after it passed, and let me tell you, the support behind this law is not there, but the frustration is. Nevada employers are already being forced to choose between hiring employees and paying the higher healthcare premiums for the ones that they do have. Steve Wynn told me today that between 2005 and 2010, his company's premiums went up about 8% per year, but this year alone the premiums are up 12%. This is an almost 50% increase in the rate of growth and amounts to about $900 per year per employee; how do we repair Nevada's economy when our employers cannot afford to provide healthcare coverage? We can and need to do better than this."

Senator Ensign has joined with Senator Hutchison (R-TX) to introduce legislation that would stop any further implementation of the health law until the lawsuits regarding the unconstitutional individual mandate are resolved. He has also joined with his colleagues to repeal the onerous "1099" reporting requirement on small businesses and has been actively engaged in trying to defund some of the many unintended consequences of the law, as well as the full out repeal and replace of the law with real healthcare reform.

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