Vice President Mike Pence spoke to small business owners in Lexington, Kentucky, about revisions to the Senate healthcare bill and promised reform by end of summer.
Vice President Mike Pence addressed Kentucky small business owners on Wednesday in an effort to “turn up the heat” on a revised Senate bill to overhaul the Affordable Care Act.
NFIB member Bryant’s Rent-All hosted the discussion in Lexington, Kentucky. Pence offered insight into the revamped bill, assuring small business owners that it will give them more choices, make healthcare more affordable, and replace the ACA before the end of summer, according to The Washington Post.
“I came here today to turn up the heat on a promise that every Republican made to the American people and this President made to the American people and tell you that we will keep our promise to all of you,” Pence said.
— Vice President Pence (@VP) July 13, 2017
Pence brought attention to the double-digit premium hikes Kentucky working families are facing, as well as the consequences of health insurers abandoning ACA exchanges. “Next year, nearly 50 percent of the Bluegrass State—59 out of your 120 Kentucky counties—will have only one insurer to choose from on the state exchange,” Pence said.
As one of the states that expanded Medicaid under federal law, Kentucky is a key stakeholder in the debate for healthcare reform.
Pence vowed that the revised bill would reduce burdensome mandates and costs on small businesses to facilitate growth. “This bill will repeal Obamacare’s mandates and taxes on the American people and American businesses and restore freedom and create jobs all across this nation,” Pence said. The Senate bill will also “expand health savings accounts and offer tax credits,” he said.
The historically high optimism reported from small business owners in NFIB’s Small Business Optimism index dropped in June, with hiring and employment declining too, according to NFIB research. “Small business optimism has been flying high for months based on the expectation that Congress will cut taxes and reform healthcare,” NFIB President and CEO Juanita Duggan said. “Washington has not delivered on the small business agenda yet, and small business owners are paying attention.”