Health Careby Senator Lamar Alexander
Posted on 2013-03-05
ALEXANDER. Madam President, I thank the Senator from Utah for his
leadership on these two pieces of legislation, and the answer is: No,
the new health care law hasn't lived up to the promises.
Let me cite an example. The President promised in the debates leading up to the health care act that if someone wanted to keep the insurance they had, they would be able to do that. I am afraid it is not working out that way, and here is why.
What happens is that businesses around the country are finding out when the health care law goes into effect fully they will either have to supply a certain type of health care insurance, which in many cases--as many as half the cases according to some studies--is a better policy and more expensive policy than they are now offering their employees, or they will have to pay a $2,000 tax, to the Internal Revenue Service. That means the employee, if the business decides to do that, will go into the exchange and lose the employer insurance they had.
Based on my experience in talking to many businesses, there is going to be a massive rush, by small businesses in particular and by many large businesses, to stop offering employer-sponsored health insurance to their employees and, instead, pay the $2,000 penalty, or tax, which means all of those employees--most of them lower income employees or middle-income employees--will lose the insurance they had and be in the exchanges looking for a new insurance policy.