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Gov. Walker: Employers Can’t Afford Uncertainty of Affordable Care Act

Monday, 19 Aug 2013 | 10:52 PM ET
Obamacare's impact on growth
Monday, 19 Aug 2013 | 7:00 PM ET
Where is President Obama's growth message? Gov. Scott Walker (R-WI); Austan Goolsbee, Chicago Booth School of Business; Jim Pethokoukis, American Enterprise Institute; and Jim Paulsen, Wells Capital Management.

Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker says Obamacare provides exactly the opposite of what businesses need to succeed in today's economy: uncertainty.

"Employers need certainty and the fact is employers aren't seeing it," Walker said in an interview on CNBC's "The Kudlow Report." "When I go out and visit firms, companies and small businesses, they say 'We don't know what's going to happen next.'"

The Governor said businesses in Wisconsin are taking measures to prevent harmful effects from the law, such as hiring more part-time or seasonal workers, despite potential and demand to grow their businesses.

"They say 'We're not going to take that risk, even though we've got the potential to grow our economy and we've got a customer base that wants us to produce more, we're reluctant to go over the 50 mark, to go over the full-time rate,'" Walker explained.

(Read More: Why latest Obamacare delay angers critics and fans)

Walker said businesses are weary of increases in premiums of up to 80 percent or more under the Affordable Care Act.

"That is tremendous high cost for small businesses and mid-sized employers in states like Wisconsin and across the country," he said. "They cannot afford to have those sorts of increases, and at the same time they can't afford to have the kind of uncertainty that's coming with the Affordable Care Act."

The Wisconsin Governor said he promotes a market-driven health care system that "puts more power back into the hands of consumers."

"Why is putting more people on Medicaid necessarily a good thing?" he asked. "We've transitioned people out of Medicaid-dependence. I don't want more people dependent on the government; I want them in control of their own destiny."

Under his health care plan in Wisconsin, Walker said Medicaid covers everyone living in poverty, while those living above the poverty level get transitioned into the private marketplace.

"You either move ultimately the way of Obamacare and Affordable Care Act, which in the end, only controls health care costs if you ration," he said. "Or the other way is the way I prefer to go, which is you ultimately control health care costs by allowing people to have control, having skin in the game, over their own health and wellness, not just health care."

Walker rebuked some Republicans leaders' movement to "defund" Obamcare as a part of the fall's upcoming negotiations to prevent a government shutdown.

(Read more: Senator Ted Cruz's Plan to Defeat Obamacare)

"Shutdowns are not a good move at all," he said. "Most Americans are center-right and want limited government but they want government that works. We need to show through reform we can make things work."

Walker said the Affordable Care Act's best chance for defeat lies in the hands of the electorate.

"You do it through holding the House and electing a Republican majority to the United States Senate, and two years later electing a new Republican President and acting on it right away," he said.

--By CNBC Associate Producer Elizabeth Schulze. Follow her on Twitter @ESchulze9.

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  • Lawrence Kudlow is a CNBC senior contributor. Previously, Kudlow was anchor of CNBC's prime-time program "The Kudlow Report"