Latta takes aim at health care on visit

Republican vouches for small firms

Bob Latta.
Bob Latta.

U.S. Rep. Bob Latta criticized Democrats in Congress and the Obama Administration for overspending, over-regulating, and not being sympathetic to the problems business owners face during a speech in Toledo on Monday.

“Folks in Washington need to get out a little bit,” he told his audience of business people at the Rotary Club of Toledo luncheon at the Park Inn. “They need to get out to the heartland to see what’s actually going on.”

Mr. Latta (R., Bowling Green) came down hard on the administration for continuing to rack up a large deficit. He said the federal government will pay $224 billion this year in interest alone. That figure will climb to $857 billion in 10 years, he said.

“Forty-nine states require a balanced budget in their state constitutions,” he said. “We need to have a balanced budget amendment to the U.S. Constitution to get this under control.”

Audience member Bob Amphor of Sunshine Inc. said he agrees with a lot of Mr. Latta’s criticisms and Mr. Latta’s assertion that the things people are most concerned about are jobs, the economy, and the deficit.

“Congress has to do something about it,” Mr. Amphor said. “They have the power to tax and spend, but they also have the power to stop taxing and stop spending.”

During his travels around his district, Mr. Latta hears many stories about how burdensome regulations have become and how they are nearly putting some small companies out of business.

Kim Marion, president and CEO of Clair David Office Furniture and Design in Toledo, said Mr. Latta is “on top of” what business people think are the issues.

“It struck home about what he said about employers having to let people go to stay under 50 (employees),” she said. “Obamacare is going to have an effect on my business. It’s an expense I was not expecting or planning on.”

The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, signed into law on March 23, 2010, gives U.S. employers with more than 50 full-time employees the choice between providing insurance that meets the standards of Obamacare or paying a penalty. This penalty helps to offset the cost of employees who aren’t covered through their employer to purchase insurance through the public health insurance exchanges.

Mr. Latta also criticized President Obama for being against allowing the Keystone Pipeline, a pipeline system to transport petroleum products from Canada and the northern United States, primarily to refineries in Texas.

“I have no idea why the President isn’t for this,” he said, adding that if approved, it would create 20,000 direct jobs and 100,000 indirect jobs, “including some in northwest Ohio.”

Contact Tanya Irwin at: or 419-724-6066.