Obamacare – more hidden taxes and unintended consequences
In the Washington Post, Robert Samuelson highlights how Obamacare would needlessly complicate our society, make it more maddeningly litigious, give the I.R.S. more prominence, and make it harder for workers to get employers to give them so much as 30 hours a week.
Samuelson writes that Obamacare would (at least for its purposes) alter the definition of “full-time worker.” Currently the Bureau of Labor Statistics defines a “full-time worker” as someone who works at least 35 hours a week. Obamacare would lower that to 30 hours a week. Samuelson writes, “The difference matters, because [Obamacare] requires employers with 50 or more full-time workers to provide health insurance for those workers. At the same time, no company has to buy insurance for part-time employees, defined as those working less than 30 hours a week.” In other words, under Obamacare, get ready for the prominence of the 29-hour work week — with corresponding pay.
“Employers have a huge incentive to hold workers under the 30-hour weekly threshold. The requirement to provide insurance above that acts as a steep employment tax. Companies will try to minimize the tax. The most vulnerable workers are the poorest and least skilled who can be most easily replaced and for whom insurance costs loom largest. Indeed, the adjustment has already started.