The Herald Bulletin

Morning Update

Opinion

September 21, 2013

Viewpoint: Misinformation being spread on ACA

(Continued)

Dr. Sumner also includes some misinformation, writing that that IRS is hiring 25,000 agents to enforce compliance. One wonders where he got that figure; the only place I’ve seen it is in a right-wing blog which called President Obama a “monster” and a “fake president.”

For fiscal years 2012 and 2013, IRS has requested 375 new agents.

Both Sumner and Robert E. Dean (Sept. 3) repeat the claim that Obamacare will cause a loss of jobs and reduction of hours. We’ve all heard of some companies which say they’re cutting jobs because of Obamacare. But anecdotal evidence is not valid evidence. What do job statistics show?

u August payroll figures show that job creation at small companies has almost doubled in the last six months, according to payroll processor ADP.

u Economists at the Center for Economic and Policy

Research analyzed figures from the Current Population Survey, which provides monthly data on workers’ weekly hours, and found that the number of workers in the 26-29 hours per week range is lower than last year. So if any employers are reducing hours, the number is too small to show up in the data.

u Mark Zandi, chief economist at Moody’s Analytics, says that figures disprove the claim that Obamacare is responsible for a shift from full-time to part-time jobs. “I was expecting to see it. I was looking for it, and it’s not there,.” he said.

u Economists at the Center for Budget and Policy

Priorities found that the share of involuntary part-time workers is down about one percentage point from its peak.

u A poll of CFOs by Duke University/CFO magazine found that American companies expect to increase the number of full-time workers by 1.8 percent in the next year.

u A survey of the Massachusetts Health Reform of 2008, which was the model for ACA, found that employers there have not dropped coverage or cut hours.

Dean’s labeling of organizations quoted as “left-wing” does not negate their facts. He also claims that members of Congress are exempt from the ACA. This is not true, no matter how much Fox News announces it. Members are required to enter the exchanges, as the law provides.

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