The Republican Conference has compiled a list of provisions in the Pelosi health care bill that would harm women, children, and families:
Tax on Jobs Will Hurt Women and Young Workers Hard. The Democrat legislation includes nearly a trillion dollars in taxes on high-income filers-more than half of whom are small businesses-and would impose an additional $135 billion in taxes on businesses who cannot afford to finance their workers' health coverage. According to Harvard professor Kate Baicker, this tax on jobs masquerading in the form of a "pay-or-play" mandate would put at least 5.5 million workers "at substantial risk of unemployment," and further noted that women and young adults "face the highest risk of losing their jobs under employer mandates." The Congressional Budget Office has also confirmed that such mandates "could reduce the hiring of low-wage workers," and could also lead to wage stagnation as wage compensation is diverted to comply with new federal taxes and mandates. At a time when unemployment stands at 26-year highs-and continues to rise-these harmful tax increases would hurt exactly the low-wage workers that health care bill is intended to help.
Federal Funds for Abortion. H.R. 3962 would permit federal funds to subsidize plans covering abortion, would require at least one health insurance plan offered in nationwide Exchanges to cover abortion, and also requires that the government-run plan cover abortions unless the "Hyde amendment" restrictions on federal funding for abortion coverage are renewed every year in the Labor-HHS appropriations bill. These provisions, coupled with other regulatory requirements that could see federal bureaucrats intervening to ensure private employers include abortion clinics in their networks, would result in the federal government funding actions inherently anti-family and which many women find morally objectionable.
Higher Health Insurance Premiums. H.R. 3962 states that insurance carriers could vary premiums solely based upon family structure, geography, and age; insurance companies could not vary premiums by age by more than 2 to 1 (i.e., charge older individuals more than twice younger applicants). Average premiums for individuals aged 18-24 are nearly one-quarter the average premium paid by individuals aged 60-64. While supporting initiatives (such as State-based high-risk pools) that would provide affordable coverage to those with pre-existing conditions, the very narrow age variations allowed in H.R. 3962 as written would function as a significant transfer of wealth from younger to older Americans-and by raising premiums for young and healthy individuals, may likely discourage their purchase of insurance.
Rising Debt a Fiscal Time Bomb for Future Generations. The Pelosi health care bill contains nearly $1.3 trillion in spending over its first ten years-and excludes companion legislation regarding Medicare physician reimbursements (H.R. 3961) that would increase the deficit by more than $200 billion, as that bill is entirely unpaid-for. Treasury Secretary Geithner's claims of the United States' fiscal rectitude were publicly mocked by an audience during a visit to China-and growing the problem by adding well over $1 trillion in federal spending would only increase the debt burden to be faced by future generations.