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“Lord, please forgive me and anyone with me in Murray Energy Corp. for the decisions that we are now forced to make to preserve the very existence of any of the enterprises that you have helped us build,” he said in the prepared prayer. “We ask for your guidance in this drastic time with the drastic decisions that will be made to have any hope of our survival as an American business enterprise.”

Without naming Mr. Obama directly, Mr. Murray said the “takers outvoted the producers” and lamented “lower and lower levels of personal freedom.”

“The American people have made their choice,” he prayed. “They have decided that America must change its course, away from the principles of our founders. And away from the idea of individual freedom and individual responsibility. Away from capitalism, economic responsibility, and personal acceptance.”

Murray Energy wasn’t the only American company with an abrupt response to Mr. Obama’s re-election, as Groupon, the daily-deals website, also announced 80 layoffs Thursday.

The conservative group Freedom Works has posted a constantly updated list of companies that will be laying off people because of the Affordable Care Act, including such medical-device makers as Welch Allyn Inc. and Stryker Corp., which will be hit by a medical-device tax under the health care law.

Separately, an anonymous Las Vegas CEO went on a local radio show last week to say he had fired 22 of his company’s 114 employees because of Mr. Obama’s re-election. He told KXNT-FM that “elections have consequences.”

“I had to lay off 22 people today to make sure that my business is going to thrive, and I’m going to be around for years to come,” he said. “I have to build up that nest egg now for the taxes and regulations that are coming my way.”

In New York, a large Applebee's franchise owner announced Thursday that he wouldn’t continue expanding, and left the door open for layoffs. Zane Tankel, chairman and CEO of Apple-Metro, which has 40 restaurants with 80 to 300 employees at each location, said Mr. Obama’s Affordable Care Act, which Mr. Romney vowed to repeal, is making it too expensive to do business.

“We’ve calculated it will [cost] some millions of dollars across our system,” he told Fox Business Network. “So what does that say? That says we won’t build more restaurants. We won’t hire more people.”

Papa John's founder and CEO John Schnatter also said after the election that Mr. Obama’s health care law could force the company to cut employees’ hours, a warning that follows his claim in August that the law could cause pizza prices to rise as much as 14 cents.

Other restaurant chains such as Darden Restaurants Inc., which owns the Red Lobster and Olive Garden brands, have said they would consider cutting workers’ hours because the health care law’s mandate to provide insurance applies only to employees who work at least 30 hours a week.

Before the election, Milwaukee manufacturer Rite-Hite Corp.’s owner Mike White warned employees that there will be “personal consequences” for voting for Mr. Obama.

In an email, he said workers “should understand the personal consequences to them of having our tax rates increase dramatically if President Obama is re-elected, forcing taxpayers to fund President Obama’s future deficits and social programs (including Obamacare), which require bigger government.”

That’s the same thing Westgate Resorts Ltd. CEO David Seigel did when he emailed employees to tell them that if Mr. Obama was re-elected, it would “threaten your job.”

David Eldridge contributed to this report.