CBO: ObamaCare May Eliminate Two Million Full-Time Jobs
But Republicans have a prime opportunity to do something about it.
Last year, a Congressional Budget Office study found out what’s in ObamaCare. To summarize: “CBO estimates that the ACA will reduce the total number of hours worked, on net, by about 1.5 to 2 percent during the period from 2017 to 2024… The reduction in CBO’s projections of hours worked represents a decline in the number of full-time-equivalent workers of about 2.0 million in 2017, rising to about 2.5 million in 2024.” The Office has just updated those figures through 2025, and the outlook is bleak. The new report says, “The labor force is projected to be about 2 million full-time-equivalent workers smaller in 2025 under the ACA than it would have been otherwise.” Furthermore, “[T]he estimated effect on the labor supply will be larger — a drop of 1.7 — if measured by the decline in total hours worked.” The report flags three specific reasons:
- “Health insurance coverage expansions — comprising exchange subsidies, rules governing health insurance, and an expansion of the Medicaid program — are together expected to reduce the labor supply by 0.65 percentage points.
- "The HI surtax is expected to reduce the labor supply by 0.12 percentage points.
- "Other major provisions — a penalty on larger employers that do not offer insurance coverage, an excise tax on certain high-premium insurance plans, and a penalty on certain individuals who do not obtain coverage — are together expected to reduce the labor supply by 0.10 percentage point.”
This should provide Republicans more ammo as they work to repeal the law. Obama, of course, would never repeal his own signature achievement. But evidence of its harmful effects is working against him, and Republicans — assuming they don’t implode — have a good shot at taking the White House in 2017, at which point repeal is more attainable. The Hill reports, “Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) pledged last week, during his most significant speech to date, that he planned to roll out a replacement plan for the healthcare law next year.” If — and that’s a huge if — the GOP plays its cards right, we can be rid of this colossal failure as early as 2017. And the equivalent of two million full-time jobs could be saved as a result.