While supporters for Barack Obama celebrated his win for a second term in the White House, big business reacted negatively to the news. The first was the market dropping more than 200 points following the news of Obama’s victory. Next, massive feedback on social media voiced concerns for companies on Twitter as people speculated that companies will be planning massive layoffs now that Obamacare has become a reality. Finally, with the controversy surrounding Obama’s mandate to make sure employees are provided health insurance to those who work thirty or more hours, Papa John’s, one of America’s largest pizza chain, has formally declared that it will shorten workers hours as a result of expenses related to healthcare.
John Schnatter, the CEO of Papa John’s Pizza, said that workers hours would have to be shorten as a result of the costs of healthcare. Schnatter said, “That’s probably what’s going to happen. It’s common sense. That’s what I call lose-lose.” Other large companies seem to be speaking out in agreement to Schnatter by saying “it’s simply business.”
Papa John’s CEO made his comments on Wednesday evening while inside a small auditorium at Edison State College’s Collier County campus. Back in August, Schnatter ended up making national headlines following his revelation to shareholders that the Affordable Care Act, which is commonly known as Obamacare, would end up with increases of 10-to-14-cents to customers buying a pizza. He told students that, “I got in a bunch of trouble for this. That’s what you do, is you pass on costs. Unfortunately, I don’t think people know what they’re going to pay for this.”
Schnatter supported and did fundraising for Mitt Romney but said he was not “pro or against” the reform law. He did, however, refer to how he would like the government’s involvement in healthcare to be by how the U.S. Postal Service is operated and said, “The worst entity in the world for running the thing is the government.” At the moment, roughly a third of the employees that work at Papa John’s are covered by the company’s health insurance plan even though he has said he would like 100 percent of them to be enrolled. Unfortunately, the rising cost of health insurance has prevented this from happening. “The good news is 100 percent of the population is going to have health insurance. We’re all going to pay for it,” Schnatter said, estimating the new law would cost the business $5 million to $8 million annually. Under the Affordable Care Act, those who work 30 hours or more a week would be mandated to receive health insurance at companies that have more than 50 workers. According to Schnatter, it was more than likely that there would be franchise owners who reduce hours of their employees to avoid having to cover them. He said, “That’s probably what’s going to happen. It’s common sense. That’s what I call lose-lose.”
Papa John’s CEO mixes pizza & politics
The CEO of Papa John’s claims Obamacare could raise prices 11-14 cents a pie. CNN’s Lisa Sylvester reports.