Betraying Small Business Owners, Senate Republicans Send Tom Price to Full Senate Vote

Main Street small business owners need an HHS Secretary with a plan to address affordable health coverage for themselves and their employees.


Leaked recordings of last weekend’s Republican retreat in Philadelphia confirmed what we’ve known all along: the Trump team and Congressional Republicans simply don’t have a plan for replacing the Affordable Care Act (ACA), even as they rush to dismantle it. After yesterday’s bold delay by Senate Democrats, today the Senate Finance Committee Republicans suspended committee rules and unilaterally advanced Representative Tom Price’s candidacy for Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services to a full Senate vote.

“If Representative Price and GOP leadership in Congress have their way and repeal the ACA they will leave most of my employees and myself without coverage,” said Sri Kumarasingam, the owner of Pastorante Restaurant in Harrisburg, PA and a member of the Main Street Alliance. “Representative Price’s shortsighted plans to repeal the ACA could cause my employees to leave for a larger competitor that can provide insurance--leaving the future of my business in the balance.”

Main Street Alliance, a national network of small business owners who engage on issues that matter most to small business and communities, have expressed grave concerns about Price’s nomination. Under the ACA, more than 4 million small business owners and their employees gained quality health insurance, providing a more secure environment so business could thrive. But Representative Price has made a name for himself in Washington by opposing the ACA, championing legislation several times over the years to repeal the law. If the GOP continues on their reckless path to repealing the ACA, the consequences for millions of small business owners will be catastrophic.

“Without coverage under the ACA, out-of-pocket medication expenses would slow my shop’s growth down substantially and an unexpected health emergency could destroy my business entirely,” said Emma Casale, the owner of Creative Procrastinations in Shepherdstown, WV and a member of the Main Street Alliance. “Medicaid eligibility, through the ACA’s expansion, has been a boon for me and my business.”

It’s clear that Republicans do not have a plan to replace the aspects of the Affordable Care Act that keeps health insurance within the reach of small business owners. Without the ACA, 30 million people, including several million small business owners, stand to lose private coverage by 2019; the individual market is likely to collapse, and premiums for small business owners will skyrocket. Small business owners need a leader to head the Department of Health and Human Services with a plan to address the looming health care crisis.