The final vote on House passage of the Senate health care bill (on the motion to concur in Senate amendments to H.R. 3590), was 219-212. The roll call is available here. That bill now goes to President Obama for his signature to become law.
The final vote on H.R. 4872, the Reconciliation Act of 2010, was 220-211. The bill now goes to the Senate for action.
The National Association of Manufacturers issued a statement from NAM President John Engler on the House action on health care legislation. The headline of the release was “Manufacturers Say Health Care Bill Bad for Business, Bad for Jobs and Bad for Economic Recovery.”
Engler’s statement follows:
It is unfortunate that the House of Representatives passed a health care bill that is going to increase costs and make it difficult for manufacturers to continue to offer generous health benefits.
Ninety-seven percent of NAM member companies voluntarily provide health care benefits not only to attract a skilled workforce, but because they believe it is the right thing to do for employees. The legislation passed today will stifle manufacturers’ ability to grow and create jobs while competing in a challenging global economy.
Manufacturers oppose many of the provisions in this legislation, as they would increase their health care costs, including:
- Excise taxes on health insurance plans which would adversely impact many companies with older workforces and/or smaller self-insured plans.
- Increase in and expansion of the Medicare hospital insurance (HI) tax, which would increase taxes on investment income and unfairly target some 70 percent of U.S. manufacturers that file taxes at the individual rate.
- Limits on Flexible Spending Accounts (FSAs) that would curb design flexibility options for manufacturers and place an immediate tax increase on employees that use these tools.
- New industry-specific fees that single out particular industries to pay for health care reform.
- Repeal of the tax exclusion for prescription drug subsidies, which would significantly increase employers’ costs and make it more difficult for them to continue offering health benefits to their retirees.
This legislation is fundamentally flawed, with the Congressional Budget Office estimating that the bill could cost as much as $2 trillion over ten years once it is fully implemented beginning in 2014. We entered this debate believing health care reform was about reducing costs through legal liability reform, delivery reform and enhancing competition by allowing employers to purchase insurance across state lines.
Manufacturing has lost 2.2 million jobs since December 2007; this is no time to place additional burdens on America’s job creators. America’s manufacturers will continue to advocate for real health care reform that lowers costs, improves care and does not impede our ability to create jobs, grow our economy and remain competitive in a global market.”
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