“Medical device maker Stryker Corp said it will cut 5 percent, or about 1000 jobs to largely offset costs related to the scheduled implementation of the new Medical Device Excise Tax in 2013.”

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“The Treasury Department’s inspector general for tax administration found that, by May, roughly 228,000 taxpayers had claimed the small-business credit to the tune of more than $278 million. The IRS had previously tried to reach out to some 4.4 million taxpayers that it thought could have been eligible for the credit, and the Congressional Budget Office had estimated that up to $2 billion could be claimed for 2010.”

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“Voters in Ohio approved a measure Tuesday night disapproving of President Obama’s healthcare law. Ohioans passed an amendment to the state constitution that says Ohio residents cannot be forced to buy health insurance… But even with strong turnout around a traditionally Democratic issue, 66 percent of voters had supported the anti-mandate initiative at the time the Associated Press called the vote.”

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“Wanda Jones, president of San Francisco’s New Century Healthcare Institute, said Anthem Blue Cross also may be reacting to changes in federal regulation of Advantage plans that are being implemented as part of health care reform… Anthem’s decision will affect 113,000 Medicare beneficiaries statewide, and decisions by other health plans to drop their Advantage plans will force another 37,000 beneficiaries in California to switch plans,”

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“The 2010 healthcare law contains a tax on the health insurance policies that most small businesses purchase… Estimates predict the tax will raise the cost of employer-sponsored insurance by 2% – 3%, imposing a cumulative cost of nearly $5,000 per family by 2020. The NFIB Research Foundation’s BSIM model suggests that such price increases will reduce private sector employment by 125,000 to 249,000 jobs in 2021, with 59 percent of those losses falling on small business.”

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“Congress and President Barack Obama agreed this summer that widening deficits and growing debt threaten our economic future, and something must be done to get our nation’s fiscal house in order. A good start would be to agree to delay initiating the new spending in the Affordable Care Act so that a broader and more stable bipartisan consensus can be built around fiscally sustainable entitlement and tax policy.”

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Nancy-Ann DeParle, White House Deputy Chief of Staff, Touts ObamaCare’s New Rate-Review System Coming Online:

Today, consumers got some good news when a big insurance company – Blue Shield of California – announced it will be returning $295 million to consumers and the community by the end of the year. This announcement will provide some much needed relief to families who have seen their premiums increase in recent years. And it’s the fourth positive announcement we’ve heard this week alone about health insurance premiums. Before the Affordable Care Act became law, many insurance companies could raise your premiums without any transparency or accountability. If you wanted to know why your rates were going up, they were under no obligation to tell you. Thanks to the Affordable Care Act, that’s all changing. Starting September 1, 2011, in every State and for the first time ever, insurance companies are required to publicly justify their actions if they want to raise rates by 10 percent or more. The Affordable Care Act also included $250 million to help States strengthen their rate review procedures so they can successfully fight high premium hikes and help keep costs under control.

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President Obama Likes The Term “ObamaCare” Because It Shows He Cares, And His Opponents Don’t

The Hill:

President Obama is embracing the term ‘ObamaCare’ on the campaign stump, attempting to turn the tables on critics who use it in a derogatory way. ‘They call it ObamaCare?’ the president told supporters at a St. Louis fundraiser Tuesday evening. ‘I do care! You should care, too.’ Earlier in the day, Obama told an audience in Dallas, ‘Folks go around saying ObamaCare. That’s right — I care. … That’s their main agenda? That’s your plank? Is making sure 30 million people don’t have health insurance?’ The president’s remarks are clearly part of a White House strategy to reclaim some lost ground on healthcare, taking the fight to Republicans… ‘If the other side wants to be the folks that don’t care, that’s fine with me. I do care.’

Yet House Democrats Dislike The Term So Much, They Banned It From Official House Mailings


Roll Call
:

In the latest battle in the Congressional franking wars, Democrats have been vetoing use of the word ‘Obamacare’ in taxpayer-financed mass mailings, saying it violates rules against using the franking privilege for “personal, partisan or political reasons.’… ‘It’s telling that Democrats are fearful of taking ownership of the president’s signature piece of legislation,’ a GOP House aide said. ‘The White House and Congressional Democrats exhausted all of their political capital and a Congressional majority to move the bill across the finish line and into law. You would think given how much it cost them, that they would embrace the end result and proudly attach the president’s name to it at every opportunity.’ ‘You know, if it was popular they’d be all about calling it Obamacare,’ another Republican source added.
At issue is the ability to send provocative communications using Congressional funds. The franking commission reviews official mail, email and social media for overtly political or inflammatory content.

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“State officials are pushing back hard against what they view as shortcomings in the healthcare reform law for fear they’ll be barraged with complaints when people have trouble affording insurance. Federal regulators are writing the rules governing key aspects of the law, including the guidelines to determine who’s eligible for subsidies to buy private insurance. Those benefits will be delivered through state-based exchanges, however, leaving state officials on the receiving end of angry phone calls if glitches in the law aren’t ironed out by 2014.”

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“Some of the federal healthcare law’s requirements related to insurance exchanges threaten the autonomy of U.S. states, which need more support in establishing the marketplaces, state governors said in a letter released on Thursday. ‘The decision to implement health insurance exchanges requires a number of complex policy decisions amid aggressive timelines,’ wrote the National Governors Association in a letter to U.S. Health Secretary Kathleen Sebelius dated Nov. 2.”

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