On behalf of the more than 362,000 members of National Taxpayers Union (NTU), I urge you to support S. 177, a bill to fully repeal the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA), thereby rescinding nearly $1 trillion in tax hikes and $1.1 trillion in unaffordable spending. Last summer’s Supreme Court decision to classify the “individual mandate” to be within Congress’s taxing powers makes it all the more vital that lawmakers take action on this important issue.
As we inch closer to full implementation of PPACA in 2014, the law’s damaging effects are increasingly having a negative impact on many across the nation. Employers are already bracing themselves for new burdensome regulations and higher costs by eliminating health insurance coverage for part-time employees. Others are cutting back employee hours to part-time status to avoid paying for expensive new plans. At a time when far too many Americans remain unemployed, small businesses are avoiding expansion in order to keep their workforces under the 50-person threshold for “large” employers and the slew of additional mandates and penalties they could incur.
PPACA’s 2.3 percent medical device excise tax that went into effect January 1 is already hitting manufacturers hard. In anticipation of the tax, some companies in this sector began freezing workforces or laying off workers at the end of 2012, and so far thousands have lost their jobs or have seen their salaries stagnate. The New Year is especially bad for seniors, who are about to see the 2.3 percent excise tax drive up health care costs as well as PPACA’s 3.8 percent investment surtax eat away at returns from their retirement assets.
Although a few parts of the President’s health care legislation were blocked from taking effect, the price tag of executing PPACA remains unbearably high. In fact, a July 2012 Congressional Budget Office (CBO) report indicated things are about to get very worse indeed; with an additional 3 to 4 million individuals remaining uninsured and premium hikes of $400 per family in the individual market. This is on top of the $2,100 per family increase the CBO previously predicted in 2009.
Looking ahead there is little doubt that the implementation of PPACA would continue to further damage our economy, hurt small businesses, and make accessing and paying for health care even more challenging for individuals – all with a tremendously heavy burden for taxpayers. Repealing PPACA should be a high priority for Congress. NTU is pleased to endorse S. 177, and we urge all Senators to co-sponsor this important bill.Sincerely,Nan SwiftFederal Affairs Manager