4. Obamacare Will Cause a Wave of Black Unemployment
Unemployment is a pressing issue for many in America, and particularly minority populations like the African American community. But how does unemployment connect to the Affordable Care Act? According to Leah Durant writing for The Washington Times, the ACA means employers won’t hire:
Consider Obamacare, the president’s signature legislative achievement. State-level insurance exchanges — a crucial part of the law — officially open for enrollment Tuesday. These online marketplaces are set to begin delivering health coverage early next year. The problem is, by driving up the price of insurance, and then passing along those new expenses to businesses, Obamacare discourages employers from hiring. Employers now have a direct economic incentive not to expand their workforce. Entrepreneurs face even greater financial barriers in getting their firms off the ground.
Durant goes on to say that the “red tape” created by the Affordable Care Act will also prevent African American entrepreneurs from starting up their own businesses.
This simply isn’t true. The prospect of the individual mandate has not caused small businesses to stop hiring and, what is more, a study by the Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis has found that 89% of businessowners have said they have no plans to cut down on employee hours. Media Matters presents a good crop of studies and analyses to demonstrate the fear of a rise in overall unemployment is unfounded, and there is no reputable analysis to show the ACA will impact racial and ethnic minorities’ job prospects.
5. Those Who Do Not Get Insurance Will Face Jail
During Senator Ted Cruz’s 21-hour nonfilibuster he made a lot of unfounded claims about the ACA, but one that came from teammate Senator Rand Paul was that a failure to comply with the Affordable Care Act’s insurance requirement and then a failure to pay the subsequent fine will land people in jail:
That is what I think the senator from Texas has started, hopefully a rebellion against coercion, rebellion against mandates, a rebellion against everything that says that big government wants to shove something down your throat, they say take it or we will put people in jail. People say we aren’t going to put anybody in jail. The heck they won’t. You will get fined first. If you don’t pay your fines, you will go to jail.
As USA Today points out, the law specifically precludes jail time under its “Waiver of Criminal Penalties” section: “In the case of any failure by a taxpayer to timely pay any penalty imposed by this section, such taxpayer shall not be subject to any criminal prosecution or penalty with respect to such failure.” The IRS has also confirmed that it will use offsets on future tax refunds for those who flout the law, not criminal proceedings.
While debate around the Affordable Care Act is not to be discouraged, what is currently at the heart of the government shutdown is not a debate, it is a farce built upon a series of distortions, misrepresentations and outright lies that is only serving to hurt American interests.
Photo credits: Thinkstock.
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