CBO: Obamacare Will Impact Labor Supply, Not Labor Demand

Earnings Reports

A major theme of the opposition to the Affordable Care Act is jobs, or more precisely, how implementation of the health care reform championed by President Barack Obama would result in massive job losses and widespread efforts to limit employees to fewer than 30 hours per week as companies attempted to mitigate the effects of the law’s employer mandate.

Republican Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas has been the public face of the Tea Party-backed campaign to stop the implementation of the Affordable Care Act, popularly known as Obamacare, and one of his leading criticisms of the health care reform law is the expected impact it will have on employment.

“Well, if you don’t believe Obamacare is the biggest job killer in the country, look to the facts. This year, report after report has rolled in about employers restricting work hours to less than 30 hours per week — the point where the mandate kicks in. The data also points to record-low workweeks in low-wage industries,” he said on the floor of the Senate on September 24, during a budget debate.

His argument is that the Obamacare provision that requires businesses with 50 or more full-time employees to provide those workers with a minimum level of health insurance coverage or face tax penalties will cause employers to shift employees’ schedules so that they will no longer be considered full time or just lay off workers entirely.