According to a new study by the nonprofit Committee to Unleash Prosperity, in 14 states Affordable Care Act subsidies and unemployment benefits for a family of four with two people not working amounts to an annualized equivalent of $80,000 a year in wages and benefits.
In three states, Massachusetts, New Jersey, and Washington, those benefits are over $100,000.
University of Chicago economics professor Casey Mulligan and Heritage Foundation research fellow EJ Antoni wrote in, "A key policy question these days that has befuddled federal lawmakers is why so many millions of Americans have not returned to the workplace in the post-Covid era. The U.S. is ‘missing’ more than three million workers of working age that could be working and were working prior to Covid but are not today."
The authors added, “A key policy question these days that has befuddled federal lawmakers is why so many millions of Americans have not returned to the workplace in the post-Covid era. The U.S. is ‘missing’ more than three million workers of working age that could be working and were working prior to Covid but are not today.”
"This study shows that one factor contributing to the dearth of workers is the generous benefits paid to families without workers."
Through the Inflation Reduction Act, President Joe Biden’s administration and the Democrats extended subsidies from the American Rescue Plan until 2025.
The authors wrote, "The expansion of assistance, especially in subsidized health insurance to families with children and no parents working, can mean that families can earn as much or more income from receiving government assistance than the median household does from working."
Last month, the US labor force participation rate was 62.1 percent, markedly lower than the 63.4 percent mark it was at before the coronavirus pandemic struck the United States in March 2020.
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