Immediately following the annnouncement, small business groups, advocates and owners began weighing in on the decision — and there’s very little consensus among them. Here are some of the early responses.
Dan Danner, president and CEO, National Federation of Independent Business:
“Clearly this mandate has now become a tax on all Americans and a broken campaign promise from President Obama not to raise taxes. We are concerned about the precedent that this will set in Congress’ ability to mandate other aspects of our lives, but we will move forward from today to continue to fight, harder than ever, for real health-care reform for our membership.”
John Costin, owner of Veneer Services Unlimited, Kennebunk, Maine:
“This is a good day for small businesses across America. Small business owners knew we couldn’t afford to go back to the nightmare scenario that health care was for us before reform. The Supreme Court’s decision means we won’t have to. Instead, we can keep looking forward. Provisions of the Affordable Care Act – from rate review to the value for premiums rule to the guarantee that there’s somewhere to go for coverage even if you have a pre-existing condition – are already making a difference for small businesses, and there’s more to look forward to. Now that the court case is behind us, it's time to put politics aside and get down to implementing the law to maximize the benefits for small businesses.”
Karen Kerrigan, president and CEO, Small Business & Entrepreneurship Council:
“The individual mandate serves as a gateway to more coercion, where small business owners and individuals will be forced to purchase any number of goods or services that political elites deem in their ‘best interest.’ Today’s ruling by the Supreme Court undercuts freedom, which is essential to economic growth and entrepreneurship. Entrepreneurship is on the decline in the U.S., and we need policies that will encourage risk-taking and start-up activity. Intrusive government policies and punishing taxes, like the Affordable Care Act with its individual mandate, work against a vibrant entrepreneurial ecosystem.”
Todd McCracken, president and CEO, National Small Business Association
“NSBA was the first national small-business group to propose a broad reform of the health care system back in 2004. Unfortunately, the Affordable Care Act fell far shy of much needed cost containment—something we hope Congress will take to heart as they move forward.