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Dem. Rep.: Americans better off working less so they can tuck their child in bed

Rep. Mark Pocan
Rep. Mark Pocan
Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

In a video posted Wednesday by the National Review Online, Rep. Mark Pocan, D-Wisc., claimed that Americans may be better off working less because of Obamacare. As a result, they can tuck their child in bed, he said.

“What that means is instead they might be able to tuck their child in bed at night and read a bedtime story, or go to an activity, which means they’re better off, at least that’s how it is in my part of Wisconsin,” he said.

Pocan used the example of a hypothetical, unnamed person who might be working two part-time jobs instead of three.

According to a report recently released by the Congressional Budget Office, Obamacare will cost the equivalent of 2.5 million full-time jobs over the next decade, the National Review said.

"We are spending $1.2 trillion and taking a blowtorch to the work force in order to fund a semi-public insurance system that still leaves tens of millions uncovered," the NRO said.

Worse yet, liberal Democrats seem happy that so much labor could be lost as a result of Obama's signature healthcare law.

"Yesterday, the CBO projected that by 2021 the Affordable Care Act will enable more than 2 million workers to escape 'job-lock' – the situation where workers remain tied to employers for access to health insurance benefits," House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., said.

The New York Times editorial board went so far as to say that Obamacare "frees" people from the "trap" of full-time work, a notion many people would find laughable.

According to an article at the Washington Post, the lost labor is "in large part due to people no longer needing work in order to acquire health insurance."

But the subsidies provided for in Obamacare are creating a disincentive to work, Douglas Elmendorf, director of the Congressional Budget Office said Wednesday.

""What the Affordable Care Act does, is to provide subsidies focused on lower- and lower-middle-income people to buy health insurance. And in order to encourage a sufficient number of people to buy an expensive product like health insurance, the subsidies are fairly large in dollar terms. Those subsidies are then withdrawn over time -- withdrawn from people as their income rises," he said.

He also said that while the subsidies "make those lower-income people better off...but they do have less of an incentive to work."

Rep. Paul Ryan, R-Wisc., said he was troubled by the report's conclusions.

"[T]o begin working, getting the dignity of work, getting more opportunities, rising (sic) their income, joining the middle class -- this means fewer people will do that," he said.

Moreover, he opined, the reduced labor participation rate will also lower economic growth.

"Yes, that's right, Mr. Chairman," Elmendorf said.



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