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House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan (R-WI) (C) listens to ranking member Rep. Chris Van Hollen (D-MD) (R) while Congressional Budget Office Director Douglas Elmendorf testifes before the committee in the Cannon House Office Building on Capitol Hill February 5, 2014 in Washington, DC. Committee members questioned Elmendorf about the latest projections by the CBO, which says the Affordable Care Act, or Obamacare, will affect supply and demand for labor, leading to a net reduction of about 2.5 million full-time jobs by 2024.
A new report from the Congressional Budget Office estimates 2.5 million Americans will leave the full time workforce by 2023. This number, revised from an estimate of 800,000, takes into account the availability of healthcare under the Affordable Care Act.
Critics argue that the decrease is a sign that the ACA is harmful -- House Speaker John Boehner spoke out after the CBO statement, saying "The middle class is getting squeezed in this economy, and this CBO report confirms that Obamacare is making it worse."
The White House responded that a healthcare system that allows workers to go part-time to spend more time with family and offers entrepreneurs affordable care while they leave their job to pursue their own business is beneficial.
Will the 2.5 estimated departing full-timers be leaving by choice? How will the ACA continue to impact employment? What does the new CBO report tell us about the future of the U.S. workforce under the Affordable Care Act?
Yevgeniy Feyman, Fellow at the Center for Medical Progress at the Manhattan Institute (a think tank focused on free-market principles
Paul Van de Water, Senior Fellow at the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities (a think tank focused on policy impacts on low- and moderate-income families and individuals), where he specializes in Medicare, Social Security, and health coverage issues; Paul spent 18 years at the Congressional Budget Office