The Senate and ObamaCare

The Senate and ObamaCare

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The following are from the U.S. Senate regarding their Repeal and Replace efforts:

Job Creators: Health Spending Bill Hurts Jobs

‘Jeopardizes The Economic Recovery Of Our Nation’s Job Creators,’ ‘Will Devastate Their Business And Their Ability To Create Jobs.’

Bill Places ‘More Burdens On America’s Job Creators’

NATIONAL FEDERATION OF INDEPENDENT BUSINESS: “Our Small Business Owners Remain Deeply Concerned That The Healthcare Law Costs Too Much And Further Jeopardizes The Economic Recovery Of Our Nation’s Job Creators. If new taxes, new mandates and new government programs in PPACA remain intact the law will stifle the ability to hire, grow and invest—key components that are necessary to move America’s economy forward in a robust and meaningful way. Simply put, Congress must repeal PPACA immediately.” (NFIB, Letter To Members Of Congress, 1/18/11)

  • NFIB: “Small Business Owners Everywhere Are Rightfully Concerned That The Unconstitutional New Mandates, Countless Rules And New Taxes In The Healthcare Law Will Devastate Their Business And Their Ability To Create Jobs.” (NFIB, Press Release, 5/14/10)

U.S. CHAMBER OF COMMERCE: “Last Year, While Strongly Advocating Health Care Reform, The Chamber Was A Leader In The Fight Against This Particular Bill — And Thus We Support Legislation In The House To Repeal It…” (“U.S. Chamber Backs Health Repeal,” Politico, 1/11/11)

NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF MANUFACTURERS: “Manufacturers Remain Adamantly Opposed To The New Laws’ Employer Mandates, Industry-Specific Fees, Medicare Hospital Insurance Tax Increases, Reporting Requirements, Excise Taxes And Limits On Flexible Spending Accounts – All Of Which Place More Burdens On America’s Job Creators. Congress needs a clean slate to consider health care reform that will lower costs and improve the quality of care. Repealing these laws is an important first step to lifting the burden they pose on manufacturing companies and their employees.” (NAM, Press Release, 1/18/11)

ABBOTT LABORATORIES: ‘Will Cut About 1,900 Jobs’ Due To ‘Impact Of The Health Care Overhaul Law’

“Abbott Laboratories, Maker Of The Rheumatoid Arthritis Drug Humira, Said It Will Cut About 1,900 Jobs … The Job Cuts Come ‘In Response To Changes In The Health- Care Industry, Including U.S. Health-Care Reform And The Challenging Regulatory Environment,’ Abbott Said In The Statement.” (“Abbott Labs Cuts 1,900 Jobs After Health Overhaul Prompts Restructuring,” Bloomberg, 1/26/11)

  • “The Health Law Cost Abbott $200 Million Last Year In Increased Rebates To Medicaid, The U.S.-Backed Health Plan For The Poor, Said Adelle Infante, An Abbott Spokeswoman, In An E- Mail. That will continue in 2011 and the company expects to pay an additional $200 million for the drugmaker-tax and discounts the law requires for patients on Medicare, the government plan for the elderly, Chief Financial Officer Thomas Freyman said during the conference call.” (“Abbott Labs Cuts 1,900 Jobs After Health Overhaul Prompts Restructuring,” Bloomberg, 1/26/11)
  • “Abbott Chairman And Chief Executive Miles White Blamed The Layoffs On The Pressure Of Federal Regulators As Well As The Impact Of The Health Care Overhaul Law.” (“State To Bear Brunt Of Abbott’s Job Cuts,” Chicago Tribune, 1/27/11)

MEDTRONIC: Law ‘Could Force It To Lay Off A Thousand Workers’

“Medical Device Maker Medtronic Warned That New Taxes On Its Products Could Force It To Lay Off A Thousand Workers.” (Editorial, “ObamaCare Day One,” The Wall Street Journal, 3/25/10)

MASSACHUSETTS MEDICAL DEVICE MANUFACTURERS: ‘The Federal Health-Care Law Could Force … Thousands Of Jobs – Out Of The Country’

“A Dire Warning From Bay State Medical-Device Companies That A New Sales Tax In The Federal Health-Care Law Could Force Their Plants – And Thousands Of Jobs – Out Of The Country Has Rattled Gov. Deval Patrick, a staunch backer of the law and pal President Obama.” (“Beware The ‘Jobs Killer’,” Boston Herald, 3/25/10)

  • “‘This Bill Is A Jobs Killer,’ Said Ernie Whiton, Chief Financial Officer Of Chelmsford’s Zoll Medical Corp., Which Employs About 650 People In Massachusetts. Many of those employees work in Zoll’s local manufacturing facility making heart defibrillators.” (“Beware The ‘Jobs Killer’,” Boston Herald, 3/25/10)

SMALL BUSINESSES: ‘A Death Sentence For Many Smaller Salons,’ ‘Nearly 9,000 Jobs’ At Risk

“The One Tax Increase That Goes Into Effect Soon – In July – Is A 10 Percent Levy On Indoor Tanning Services, Dubbed The ‘Vanity Tax.’” (“Timing Right For Dem Midterm Hopes,” Politico, 3/23/10)

“Many Tanning Experts Believe The Tax Could Cut Nearly 9,000 Jobs As Well.” (“Indoor Tanning Salons Will Help Pay For Health Care Under New Bill,” WBTW-CBS [SC], 3/28/10)

“The Owners Of Wisconsin Tanning Salons Say They’re Getting Burned By A New Tax In The Federal Health Reform Law. Starting July 1st, Those Who Provide Artificial Indoor Tans Will Be Taxed 10 Percent Of Their Costs.” (“Wisconsin Tanning Salons Getting Burned By New HCR Law,” WTAQ Radio, 3/26/10)

·         “‘At First I Thought It Was A Joke, Because I Thought Surely They’re Not Going To Impose Such A Double Digit, Large Tax On… Lower And Middle Class Women,’ Said Shannah Lane, Owner Of Tan-Tastic Tanning.” (“Tanning Salons Upset Over 10 Percent Tax On Services,” WSAV NBC [Savannah, GA], 3/29/10)

Health Bill: Job Creators Discuss Difficulties

‘I Have Been Struggling To Keep My Doors Open The Last Few Years… I Will Have To Pull The Plug.’

‘Our Only Alternative Is To Cut Costs. Cutting Costs Means Cutting Staff.’

SCOTT WOMACK, President, Womack Restaurants, Terre Haute, IN: “Restaurants are already facing many challenges, including rising commodity, fuel and energy prices, rising state and local taxes, and higher unemployment taxes. Restaurants are unable to raise prices in this economy. We don’t have a way to replace the lost income. Our only alternative is to cut costs. Cutting costs means cutting staff, means reducing hours. It means pushing people into part time status. … To that end, we are asking the Congress to repeal its health care law.” (U.S. House Of Representatives, Ways And Means Committee, Hearing, 1/26/11)

Other Small Businesses On Dem Health Care Law Consequences:

‘I Will Have To Pull The Plug’ Or ‘Drop Employees’

Q: As A Result Of Those Changes [As A Consequence Of The New Healthcare Law] Are You Likely To Adjust Your Business Operations For The Next Year?”

  • Darcey Gunn, 5 Star Roofing Co. LLC, Loveland, CO: “I have been struggling to keep my doors open the last few years. I have never laid off any employees. The last thing I need is more expenses. This is the wrong time to hurt small business owners. I will have to pull the plug.”

  • Mike Sudweeks, MAACO Auto Painting and Body Work, Glendale, AZ: “We are going to have to drop employees.”

  • Blake Haynie, Action Signs, Inc., Kennesaw, GA: “I will lay off the necessary number of employees to cover the extra costs.”
  • Gary Crosby, Gary Crosby Construction, Belle Plaine, MN: “Have fewer employees.”

·         Catherine Marsh, Katie’s Place, Botkins, OH: “Reducing staff, cutting benefits.”

FACT CHECK: Democrats Mislead On Polling

Despite The Democrat Spin, Polls Show More Americans Want The New Health Bill Repealed

SEN. HARRY REID (D-NV): “Republicans Are Fighting To Repeal The Health Reform Law, Ignoring The 80% Of Americans Who Want Them To Leave It Alone.” (Sen. Reid, Floor Remarks, 2/2/11)

SURVEY: 50% OF AMERICANS SAY ‘REPEAL ALL PROVISIONS’

CNN: “And If You Had To Choose, Would You Rather See Congress Vote To Repeal All Of The Provisions In The New Law Or Would You Rather See Congress Vote To Leave In Place All The Provisions In The New Law?”

Repeal all provisions:              50%

Keep all provisions in place:       42%

No opinion:                                8%

(CNN Opinion Research Poll, 1/14-16/11)

QUINNIPIAC: “Do You Think Congress Should Try To Repeal The New Health Care Law, Or Should They Let It Stand?”

Should repeal it:                      48%

Should let it stand:                     43%

Don’t know/Not answered:         8%

(Quinnipiac National Poll, 1/18/11)

GALLUP: “Would You Want Your Representative In Congress To Vote ‘Yes’ To Repeal The Healthcare Law Or To Vote ‘No’ And Let The Healthcare Law Stand?”

Vote to repeal:                          46%

Vote to let stand:                       40%

No opinion:                                14%

Where Does The Money Come From?

Democrat Bill ‘Raises A Trillion Dollars’ By Hiking Taxes Over $500 Billion And Cutting Medicare Over $500 Billion

SEN. MAX BAUCUS (D-MT): “This Bill Doesn’t Cost A Thin Dime. A Lot Of People Like To Say, Oh, That’s A Trillion Dollar Bill. Well, It Does Cost A Trillion, But It Raises A Trillion Dollars, So On That Basis It Doesn’t Cost Anything.” (Sen. Baucus, Floor Remarks, 1/2/11)

MEDICARE CUTS: More Than $500 Billion Cut From Hospitals, Nursing Homes, Hospice, Home Health Programs, Medicare Advantage, And Much More…

SEN. DICK DURBIN (D-IL): “Some Of Our Critics On The Other Side Of The Aisle Have Said, ‘You Know, They’re [Democrats] Going To Cut Hundreds Of Billions Of Dollars Out Of Medicare.’ And The Simple Answer Is, Yes.” (Sen. Durbin, Floor Remarks, 3/4/10)

$150 BILLION IN CUTS TO HOSPITALS, NURSING HOMES, AND HOSPICE

  • “Ensuring Medicare Sustainability… -156.6 [Billion Dollars].” “TITLE III—Improving The Quality And Efficiency Of Health Care; Subtitle E—Ensuring Medicare Sustainability; 3401 Revision Of Certain Market Basket Updates And Incorporation Of Services Productivity Improvements Into Market Basket Updates That Do Not Already Incorporate Such Improvements (Effect Of Productivity Adjustment For Home Health Included In Estimate For Section 3131)… 2010-2019… -156.6 [Billion Dollars].” (CBO Director Doug Elmendorf, Letter To Rep. Nancy Pelosi, 3/18/10, P.14)

$200 BILLION IN CUTS TO MEDICARE ADVANTAGE

$40 BILLION IN CUTS TO HOME HEALTH CARE

  • “Home Health Care… -39.7 [Billion Dollars].” “TITLE III—Improving The Quality And Efficiency Of Health Care; Subtitle B—Improving Medicare For Patients And Providers; Part III – Improving Payment Accuracy; 3131 Payment Adjustments For Home Health Care (Includes Effect Of Section 3401)… 2010-2019… -39.7 [Billion Dollars].” (CBO Director Doug Elmendorf, Letter To Rep. Nancy Pelosi, 3/18/10, P.13)

$20 BILLION IN REDUCED “PAYMENTS TO HOSPITALS THAT SERVE A LARGE NUMBER OF LOW-INCOME PATIENTS”

  • “Medicare Disproportionate Share Hospital (DSH) Payments… -22.1 [Billion Dollars].” “TITLE III—Improving The Quality And Efficiency Of Health Care; Subtitle B—Improving Medicare For Patients And Providers; Part III—Improving Payment Accuracy; 3133 Medicare Disproportionate Share Hospital (DSH) Payments… 2010-2019… -22.1 [Billion Dollars].” (CBO Director Doug Elmendorf, Letter To Rep. Nancy Pelosi, 3/18/10, P.13)

TAX HIKES: More Than $500 Billion In Taxes On Small Businesses, Medicare Patients, Private Health Insurance Plans, Medical Device Manufacturers, And Others

SEN. MARY LANDRIEU (D-LA): “Yes, We’ve Had To Raise Some Taxes And Fees To Pay For This Bill.” (CSPAN’s Washington Journal, 12/22/09)

$200 BILLION IN TAXES ON INDIVIDUALS AND SMALL BUSINESSES

$50 BILLION IN TAXES ON EMPLOYERS

$30 BILLION IN TAXES ON PRIVATE HEALTH INSURANCE PLANS

$20 BILLION IN TAXES ON UNINSURED AMERICANS

$20 BILLION IN TAXES ON MEDICAL DEVICE MANUFACTURERS

Dems: ‘If You Like Your Plan, You’ll Be Able To Keep It’

Unless You Have ‘Child-Only Health Insurance,’ Or You’re A ‘Retiree,’ Or You Have ‘A Medicare Advantage’ Plan, Or You Get Your ‘Insurance Through An Employer’

PRESIDENT OBAMA: “If You Like Your Current Plan, You Will Be Able To Keep It.  Let Me Repeat That:  If You Like Your Plan, You’ll Be Able To Keep It.” (President Obama, Remarks At The White House, Washington, D.C., 7/21/09)

COLORADO: Insurer ‘Will Terminate Current Policies Held By State Residents’

“Aetna … Will Terminate Current Policies Held By State Residents.” “A spokeswoman for Aetna confirmed Monday that the insurer will no longer sell new individual-market health insurance policies in Colorado and will terminate current policies held by state residents no later than July 31, 2012. The change represents Aetna’s third major recent pull-back on health-insurance offerings in Colorado. … Insurers have complained that federal health care reform has made offering their product more expensive” (“Aetna Retrenches In Colorado,” Denver Business Journal, 1/31/11)

  • “Aetna was the sixth largest insurer of individual health-care customers in Colorado, reporting 22,400 of them at the end of 2009, which is the most recent statistic available from the Colorado Division of Insurance. That represented 4.29 percent of the individual health care market in the state.” (“Aetna Retrenches In Colorado,” Denver Business Journal, 1/31/11)

“Aetna Was Part Of A Large Group Of Insurers That Left The Child-Only Individual Insurance Market Last September When The Affordable Care Act Banned Insurers From Denying Policies To Kids With Costly Existing Conditions.” (“Aetna Retrenches In Colorado,” Denver Business Journal, 1/31/11)

“Then, Later In The Year, Aetna Announced That It Also Was Leaving The Small-Group Market. A Provision In The Affordable Care Act Requires That At Least 85 Percent Of Insurance Premiums In The Small- And Large-Group Markets Must Go To Health Care Costs.” (“Aetna Retrenches In Colorado,” Denver Business Journal, 1/31/11)

‘Carriers Drop Child-Only Health Insurance’

“Twenty States Now Have No Insurers Offering Child-Only Policies. Since September, the health reform law has barred insurers from withholding policies to children under 19 who have a pre-existing condition. Rather than take on the burdensome cost of writing policies for potentially-pricey medical conditions, many carriers decided to leave the market altogether.” (“Child-Only Health Plans Endangered,” Politico, 1/27/11)

  • “Other States That No Longer Have Carriers Selling Child-Only Plans Include Alaska, Arizona, Connecticut, Delaware, Georgia, Minnesota, Nebraska, Nevada, New Mexico, North Dakota, Oklahoma, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Tennessee, Utah, West Virginia And Wyoming, according to the investigation by GOP staff on the Senate Health, Labor and Pensions Committee.” (“Child-Only Health Plans Endangered,” Politico, 1/27/11)

‘Stop Selling’ To ‘People Who Receive Their Insurance Through An Employer’

“The Principal Financial Group Announced On Thursday That It Planned To Stop Selling Health Insurance, Another Sign Of Upheaval Emerging Among Insurers As The New Federal Health Law Starts To Take Effect. The Company, Based In Iowa, Provides Coverage To About 840,000 People Who Receive Their Insurance Through An Employer.” (“Insurer Cuts Health Plans As New Law Takes Hold,” The New York Times, 10/1/10)

  • “At The Principal Financial Group, The Company’s Decision Reflected Its Assessment Of Its Ability To Compete In The Environment Created By The New Law. ‘Now scale really matters,’ said Daniel J. Houston, a senior executive at Principal, which is headquartered in Des Moines. ‘We don’t have a significant concentration in any one market.’” (“Insurer Cuts Health Plans As New Law Takes Hold,” The New York Times, 10/1/10)

‘Stop Offering… To Retirees’

“3M Co. Confirmed It Would Eventually Stop Offering Its Health-Insurance Plan To Retirees, Citing The Federal Health Overhaul As A Factor.” (“3M To Change Health-Plan Options For Workers,” The Wall Street Journal, 10/4/10)

‘Drop… Medicare Advantage Health Insurance Program’

“Harvard Pilgrim Health Care Has Notified Customers That It Will Drop Its Medicare Advantage Health Insurance Program At The End Of The Year, Forcing 22,000 Senior Citizens In Massachusetts, New Hampshire, And Maine To Seek Alternative Supplemental Coverage. The decision by Wellesley-based Harvard Pilgrim, the state’s second-largest health insurer, was prompted by a freeze in federal reimbursements and a new requirement that insurers offering the kind of product sold by Harvard Pilgrim — a Medicare Advantage private fee for service plan — form a contracted network of doctors who agree to participate for a negotiated amount of money.” (“Harvard Pilgrim Cancels Medicare Advantage Plan,” The Boston Globe, 9/28/10)

·         Lynn Bowman, Vice President Of Customer Service At Harvard Pilgrim’s Office In Quincy: “We Know That Cuts In Medicare Are Being Used To Fund National Health Care Reform.’’ (“Harvard Pilgrim Cancels Medicare Advantage Plan,” The Boston Globe, 9/28/10)

TODAY: GOP SENATORS TO DISCUSS HEALTH SPENDING BILL REPEAL EFFORTS

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Senate Republicans will hold a press conference today, February 2, 2011 in the Senate Radio/TV gallery to discuss the Health Spending Bill and the Senate GOP effort to repeal it.

WHO:  Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) Senate Republican Whip Jon Kyl (R-AZ) Senate Republican Conference Vice-Chair John Barrasso (R-WY)

National Republican Senatorial Committee Chairman John Cornyn (R-TX) Senator Orrin Hatch (R-UT) Senator Mike Johanns (R-NE)

WHAT:  Media Availability To Discuss GOP Health Spending Bill Repeal Efforts.

WHEN:  TODAY, IMMEDIATELY FOLLOWING VOTES

WHERE:  Senate Radio/TV Gallery

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