Tuesday, November 13, 2012
Michigan medical technology giant Stryker Corporation announced last year that it was slicing its workforce by 5 percent and blamed ObamaCare’s medical device tax as the reason. And yet, unlike the CEO’s of Papa John’s, Applebees and others who have projected ObamaCare-related cutbacks in the restaurant industry just this week, Stryker faced no threats of boycotts nor angry accusations that the job cuts were politically motivated by disgruntled Romney voters.
There are three heirs to the Stryker fortune that was started when Homer Stryker, a surgeon from Kalamazoo, Michigan, founded the company. They are his three billionaire grandchildren: Pat Stryker, Jon Stryker and Ronda Stryker. Pat and Jon are well known to political operatives in Colorado and Michigan, respectively, as each was heavily involved in financing Left-wing political organizations aimed at truning the states from Republican Red to Democrat Blue. Ronda, the only one of the three on the board of directors at Stryker, has also been a generous political donor to Democrats.
As with the restaurant industry, Stryker was hardly alone in worrying over the impact of the tax on its business model: The Medical Device Manufacturer’s Association calls the medical device levy a “tax on innovation” and estimates that it will hammer the high tech industry to the tune of $30 billion per year. The CEOs at Stryker and Papa John’s announced the same response (staffing cutbacks) to the same challenge (harmful economic winds blowing from ObamaCare).