California small business owner: Health care ruling means outsourcing jobs, layoffs


William Temple holds up a tea pot as he shouts against President Obama's 2010 healthcare law outside the Supreme Court on Thursday. (JASON REED/REUTERS)
June 28, 2012

Today, in a stunning 5-4 decision, the Supreme Court ruled on the constitutionality of Obamacare. This will now go down in my memory as was one of the saddest days for our country, for our individual liberty, our freedoms, and our way of life in America.

I am a small business owner, and I still believe, as do the dissenting judges, that this ruling gives the federal government far too much power. It strips the American people of their liberty and individual freedom. As some commentators argued before the ruling, “If they can do this, they can do anything to the American people.”

The brakes are off, and I fear the Obama administration will put the pedal to the metal and push through even more distasteful mandates – sorry, “taxes” – to force us to follow the route toward Europe’s economic crisis.

More importantly, the question looming over every small, medium and large business is now, “How will this affect not only my business, but businesses as a whole, now and in the future?”

First of all, in my business, the first step will be to start cutting costs and that means cutting jobs. With all the requirements that the government will be instituting, I will be minimizing my risk. For many, that will begin with the investment they have in their labor force.

If at all possible, I will be outsourcing those jobs that we presently do in house, such as accounting and payroll and anything else I can outsource to save labor costs. I am sure other companies will be doing the same. I predict that there will now be massive layoffs in the private sector in order to accommodate this legislation.

You will begin to see many businesses that offer any kind of healthcare eliminating it completely. Instead of providing access to quality healthcare, they will simply pay the fine or tax and let their employees fend for themselves. My labor force will be cut to the bone. That is the only way for my business to survive, although I am under the 50 employees exemption from paying the fine. I can see many companies fleeing this country to other locations in order to keep their businesses alive.

So, I am disappointed and saddened for our country. But I have utter and complete faith in the American people, and as the Obama administration takes their victory lap, I believe that they again have underestimated the American people. This fight is not over.

As the country has time to digest this decision, there is still work to be done. This ruling may become a rallying cry to those around the country who own a business or who have ever hired an employee or been one. Remember, if they can tax you on this, they can tax you for anything.

We must change this legislation or get rid of it altogether. Small business and the private sector are the backbone of this country; the backbone of our economy. As businesses again tighten their belts, more job losses will follow and the patience of the American people will begin to thin towards a government and an administration that has created and extended the economic suffering of the country.

President Obama’s legislation may have been upheld by the court, but now he must face a more furious court, the court of public opinion – and that one convenes in November.

Rose Corona is owner of Big Horse Feed & Mercantile, an equestrian feed and retail company in Temecula, California.

Flip side: Washington business owner says law provides certainty, tax breaks.

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