Rep. Guthrie Proposal Should Be Part of the Solution to Increase Acesss to Healthcare

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Posted by Virginia Birkofer on Thursday, July 6th, 2017, 9:00 AM PERMALINK

While much of the healthcare debate has focused on ensuring individuals have health insurance and choice, less attention has been paid to whether individuals have access to the care they need.

This problem of access to care is likely to get worse in the future. By 2020, there will be a shortage of 91,000 doctors, according to an estimate by the Association of American Medical Colleges. This shortage will be felt especially hard in medically underserved communities, defined as areas of population with few primary care providers, and high infant mortality, high poverty, or a high older adult population.

H.R. 592, the Pharmacy and Medically Underserved Areas Enhancement Act seeks to address the shortfall of healthcare coverage in medically underserved areas by allowing qualified pharmacists to perform certain healthcare services.

By designating pharmacists as “non-physician providers” under Medicare Part B, this legislations would allow trained professionals to provide certain patient care services based on what is permitted under a state’s scope of practice laws. In turn, this would help meet the shortage of physicians and the demand for healthcare services by allowing the healthcare needs of underserved communities to be met.

While this legislation may increase costs initially, over the long term H.R. 592 would result in strong savings. As noted in a report to the U.S. Surgeon General, increasing access to care could provide $4 in health care savings for every $1 spent. Individuals that are not receiving upfront healthcare treatment from physicians inevitably must be treated later when their condition has deteriorated at a greater expense to the healthcare system.

As a result, this legislation will streamline the healthcare system and allow the truly needy access to care. ATR wrote a letter of support to Congressman Guthrie in support of H.R. 592.

Expanding the ability of the truly needy to access care will result in billions of savings over the long term and decrease pressure on the nation’s health system. As such, this important legislation should be supported by all Members of Congress.

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IPAB Should Be Repealed

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Posted by Virginia Birkofer on Thursday, July 6th, 2017, 8:00 AM PERMALINK

Congress continues to make progress on phase one of healthcare reform through the Senate’s “Better Care Reconciliation Act,” legislation that repeals key parts of Obamacare. Moving forward, there are many other reforms that Congress should make to the nation’s healthcare system that promote access to care, fiscal responsibility, patient choice, and state flexibility. One obvious reform should be the repeal of the Independent Advisory Payment Board (IPAB).

IPAB was created seven years ago when Obamacare was signed into law. The basic role of IPAB is to institute price controls and rationing within the Medicare system. In practice, this leaves the U.S. healthcare system with the same price controls attempted (and failed) in socialized medicine systems seen throughout the world.  

IPAB’s scope and role also undermines the constitutionally granted authority that Congress has over the power of the purse. IPAB bureaucrats are free to institute price controls they see fit without approval from Congress. As a result, this board has immense power over health outcomes and the livelihood of patients and doctors.

Repealing IPAB is not controversial – there is broad consensus from a range of stakeholders. Allowing the board to operate will result in indiscriminate cuts to Medicare that undermine healthcare choice and access of 55 million Americans.

Congress has several legislative options to repealing IPAB. Lawmakers have a brief window to repeal IPAB by passing the “Protecting Medicare from Executive Action Act of 2017” (S.J. Res. 17/H.J. Res. 51). This option allows Congress to discontinue IPAB through an expedited legislative process, but must be used before mid-August.

If they choose not to go down this path, Congress can pass H.R. 849, legislation introduced by Congressman Phil Roe (R-TN). This bipartisan legislation has more than 200 co-sponsors and could be considered as a stand-alone proposal or as part of broader healthcare reforms.

While repeal of IPAB is scored as costing $7.6 billion over the next decade, this should not be an impediment to repealing the board, as current law assumes some price controls will already go into effect. Given other stages of healthcare reform will produce significant savings that reduce the deficit, repealing IPAB should not be constrained by the need to find corresponding offsets.

This year, Congress and the administration have an opportunity to implement bold healthcare reform. Repealing IPAB and the price controls that the board will implement should be part of this legislative agenda. 

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Three Illinois House Members Break Taxpayer Protection Pledge With Vote In Favor 32% Income Tax Hike

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Posted by Americans for Tax Reform on Wednesday, July 5th, 2017, 5:53 PM PERMALINK

Shortly after Gov. Bruce Rauner vetoed a budget that imposes large, permanent increases in the state’s personal and corporate income tax rates, the state senate held a July 4th vote in which they overrode Gov. Rauner’ veto. The House is set to follow suit on Thursday. If the House votes to override, as is expected, the state’s personal income tax will increase by a whopping 32%, taking the rate from 3.75 percent to 4.95 percent. Illinois’ corporate tax rate would rise from 5.25 percent to 7 percent, a 33% increase.

Among the 15 Republicans who voted in favor of this massive tax hike when it originally passed out of the House, three are Taxpayer Protection Pledge signers. One Democratic lawmaker also broke their Taxpayer Protection Pledge by voting for this income tax hike. The House members who broke their commitment to oppose any and all efforts to raise taxes include: Rep. John Cavaletto (R-107), Rep. Robert Pritchard (R-70), and Rep. Reggie Phillips (R-110), (Rep. Linda Chapa LaVia (D-83). 

Gov. Rauner describe the permanent income tax hike as “a two-by-four across the forehead.” Enactment of this budget is a terrible deal for Illinois taxpayers. In addition to imposing large tax increases that will drain resources from the private sector, this budget contains none of structural reforms Illinois desperately needs to put state spending in line with revenues, fix its pension crisis, and become more attractive to new residents, employers, and investors.

Illinois is already losing more residents than any other state. This huge income tax hike will only further the exodus of individuals, families, and employers from the Land of Lincoln.

(Update: a planned Thursday session in which the Illinois House is planning to override Gov. Rauner's veto has been delayed after a woman threw an unidentified powdery substance into the Governor's office. The Illinois capitol has been locked down, with legislators and staff ordered to shelter themselves until the matter is resolved). 

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The Senate Bill Reforms Medicaid in a Fiscally Responsible Way

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Posted by Elizabeth McKee on Wednesday, July 5th, 2017, 9:30 AM PERMALINK

Critics of the Senate’s “Better Care Reconciliation Act” argue that the healthcare reforms made to Medicaid in the bill are cruel, irresponsible, or reckless. 

But this is wrong. The truth is, The BCRA does not cut Medicaid funding or kick people off the program. It does, however, implement practical reforms that would put Medicaid on a sustainable path by tying it to inflation - first CPI-M and then CPI-U after a transition period. Through this reform, the BCRA ensures that people who depend on Medicaid can continue to receive the care they depend on. No one will be kicked off Medicaid, and no one will no longer be eligible for the program.

“The BCRA will put Medicaid on a budget for the first time in history,” said Americans for Tax Reform president Grover Norquist, “allowing it to grow with inflation and population but not continue to spin out of control.”

Under the Senate Reforms, Medicaid will Continue to Grow. The BCRA ties the growth rate of the program to inflation, first at CPI-M or CPI-M+1 percent depending on the eligibility group, and then CPI-U after 2025. This will ensure that the program’s per-beneficiary growth rate does not grow faster than the economy. As noted below, this reform ensures that Medicaid will grow at a reasonable rate. The program will remain solvent for years to come with both current and new enrollees continuing to receive benefits. In fact, the BCRA allows Medicaid funding to increase by $71 billion over the next decade.

The Current Trajectory of Medicaid is Unsustainable. Under current law, Medicaid spending will grow every year and will gradually comprise a larger part of federal spending as a percentage of the economy. This year, federal Medicaid spending will total $393 billion. By 2026, CBO projects spending will reach $624 billion – a growth rate of 5.34 percent, far above the growth rate of the economy. 

Failing to address this problem will mean the truly needy no longer have access to care. The Senate bill is a sensible measure that allows the program to keep growing at a sustainable rate, extending Medicaid’s lifespan far into the future.

BCRA Medicaid Reforms Promote State Flexibility and Choice. In addition to stabilizing the program, the Senate legislation allows the federal government to distribute Medicaid funds to states in the form of a traditional block grant or a targeted per capita allotment. States will be given several years to implement this system, and will be granted broad flexibility to implement work requirements. In this way, Medicaid can be adapted to target the specific needs of each state.

These Ideas Have Bipartisan Support. Democrats have previously endorsed the creation of a per capita spending cap on Medicaid – including Senator Patty Murray (D-WA), Senator Patrick Leahy (D-VT), Senator Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) and former Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV).

In fact, the idea originated from the Bill Clinton White House.

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Senate Should Pass the Better Care Reconciliation Act

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Posted by Alexander Hendrie on Friday, June 30th, 2017, 2:00 PM PERMALINK

Passage of the Senate Health Bill is A Conservative Win [link]

- Obamacare suppressed individual choice, competition, and state flexibility, and imposed a long list of taxes on businesses and families.

- The Senate's Better Care Reconciliation Act (BCRA) will replace the failing system with a sustainable, patient-centered health care system, just as Republicans promised in the last election.

-  The bill repeals a total of $700 billion dollars in Obamacare taxes that raise the cost of care, restrict choice, and hurt economic growth.

- The BCRA strengthens tax-preferred Health Savings Accounts, so that families are better able to save for health care expenses.

- The bill allows states to implement health care systems that work for families in the real world. No longer will we have a one size fits all system dreamed up by bureaucrats in Washington and policed by the IRS.

- The BCRA enacts long overdue entitlement reform that reins in out of control spending while ensuring the truly needy are protected.

The Senate Plan to Abolish Obamacare Taxes Is Good for the Middle Class [link]

-  The narrative from the media has been that this bill is a giant tax cut for “the rich.” This narrative is false.

- Obamacare imposed a long list of taxes that directly hit middle class families.

- Many of these taxes have been used to enforce the Obamacare vision of bigger government, more regulations and rules, and fewer choices.

- Former President Obama promised he would not raise any form of tax on any American making less than $250,000 a year. But he shattered the promise when he signed Obamacare into law.

The Senate Bill Reforms Medicaid in A Fiscally Responsible Way [link]

- Under the reforms in the BCRA, Medicaid will continue to grow. No one is kicked off the program, and no one loses their federal Medicaid eligibility.

- The Senate bill ensures that Medicaid does not grow faster than the economy by tying the program to inflation.

- These Medicaid reforms were originally proposed by the Clinton Administration.

 The Senate Bill Repeals Obamacare’s Medicine Cabinet Tax [link]

- Repeal of this tax provides relief to the 30 – 35 million Americans with a Flexible Spending Account and the 20 million Americans with a Health Savings Account.

- Under this tax, Americans are forbidden from using HSAs and FSAs to purchase over the counter medicines such as cold, cough, and flu medicines, aspirin, and allergy medicines.

- This is a $5.6 billion tax cut.

The Senate Bill Also Repeals Obamacare’s Chronic Care Tax [link]

- Before Obamacare, Americans facing high out of pocket medical expenses were allowed an income tax deduction to the extent that those expenses exceeded 7.5 percent of adjusted gross income (AGI).

- Obamacare now imposes a threshold of 10 percent of AGI.

- The Obamacare Chronic Care Tax hits at least 10 million American households making an average of $53,000.

- This is a $36 billion tax cut.

The Senate Bill Should Keep Repeal of the 3.8 Percent Net Investment Income Tax [link]

- This tax is a known job-killer. It would be a bad idea to leave this tax in the code for a second longer than necessary. The faster we get the capital gains tax down, the faster we’ll get further growth and investment.

- 47 conservative groups support repeal of the 3.8 percent NIIT.

- Capital gains taxes have a significant negative impact on capital formation, productivity, and economic growth while raising little or even negative revenue.

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Roy Cooper Uses Same Obstructionist Playbook As Washington Democrats, But Taxpayers Win With Veto Override

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Posted by Americans for Tax Reform on Friday, June 30th, 2017, 12:57 PM PERMALINK

Some positive news came out of North Carolina this week for taxpayers in the state, where Republicans who control the state legislature enacted a new two year budget that will allow their constituents to keep more of their hard-earned income. North Carolina’s new budget, enacted with a bipartisan super-majority vote overriding Gov. Roy Cooper’s (D) veto, makes the following changes to the state’s tax code, which will take effect January 1, 2019:

  • Cuts the state’s flat personal income tax rate from 5.499% to 5.25%
  •  Reduces the corporate tax rate from 3% to 2.5%
  •  Increases the standard deduction for married couples filing jointly from  $17,500 to $20,000
  •  Cuts the franchise tax rate for S-Corporations

Gov. Roy Cooper, in explaining the justification for his veto, portrayed the budget approved by both chambers of the North Carolina General Assembly as a giveaway to the wealthy. Unfortunately for Cooper, the facts show the opposite about the new budget.

The new budget approved over Cooper’s objections provides tax relief for 99% of North Carolinians. In fact, the burden of total income tax liability is transferred more from middle and low income earners to high income earners. After the reduced income tax rates go into effect in 2019, households earning less than $100,000 annually will contribute a lower percentage of total income tax collections, while those making more than $100,000 will contribute a greater share.

Another smart reform included in the new budget is the creation of the “Personal Education Savings Account” program for students with disabilities. Education Savings Accounts (ESAs) allow parents of students with special needs to customize their child’s education to best fit their needs. Each account will receive $9,000, which can be used for school tuition, books, and other education expenses. North Carolina joins Arizona, Nevada, Mississippi, Florida, and Tennessee as the handful of states with active ESA programs.

Republicans in North Carolina inherited a $2.7 billion deficit, along with the highest personal and corporate income tax rates in the region when they took over the General Assembly six years ago. Since then, Senate President Phil Berger, Speaker Tim Moore, and their colleagues have worked hard to put the state on sound financial footing, while implementing pro-growth tax reform that has made the state more attractive to job creators and investors. In addition to the pro-growth tax changes enacted in recent years, beginning with the landmark 2013 tax reform act, North Carolina lawmakers have kept growth in spending in check, and built up the largest rainy day fund in state history. In every year since Republicans took control of the state legislature, spending growth has been held below the combined rate of population growth and inflation.

“It’s unfortunate that Gov. Roy Cooper has decided to use the same obstructionist playbook as Nancy Pelosi and Washington Democrats. Fortunately for North Carolina taxpayers, Republican legislators are using the veto-proof majorities awarded to them by voters to provide further relief to North Carolina taxpayers,” said Grover Norquist, president of Americans for Tax Reform. “Individuals, families, and employers across North Carolina have been allowed to keep billions of dollars more of their hard-earned income thanks to the multiple rounds of tax reform enacted by Republican state legislators in recent years. This latest personal and corporate income tax cuts will make the state even more conducive to economic growth and job creation.”

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What The Mainstream Media Won't Tell You About The Senate's Health Care Bill

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Posted by ATR on Friday, June 30th, 2017, 10:39 AM PERMALINK

Writing in FoxNews.com, ATR president Grover Norquist highlighted the numerous conservative changes present in the Senate’s Healthcare bill.

Norquist noted the establishment media’s failure to mention the tax cuts to middle-class Americans that would come from passage of the Senate’s healthcare reform bill. Norquist also stated that the bill will stimulate competition and enact drastic entitlement reform:

First, the bill repeals a total of $700 billion dollars in ObamaCare taxes that raise the cost of care, restrict choice, and hurt economic growth.

Second, the BCRA strengthens tax-preferred Health Savings Accounts, so that families are better able to save for health care expenses.

Third, the bill allows states to implement health care systems that work for families in the real world. No longer will we have a one size fits all system dreamed up by bureaucrats in Washington and policed by the IRS.

Fourth, the BCRA enacts long overdue entitlement reform that reins in out of control spending while ensuring the truly needy are protected.

Read the full piece here.

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Senate Heath Care Bill is a Win for Middle Class

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Posted by ATR on Friday, June 30th, 2017, 10:28 AM PERMALINK

Americans for Tax Reform wrote an Op-Ed in The Hill on the many middle class tax cuts in the Senate’s Healthcare Reform Bill.

The article points out numerous examples of the Senate’s “Better Care Reconciliation Act” (BCRA) undoing Obamacare taxes that are directed at the middle-class. A few notable taxes repealed include:

·         Rolling back the individual mandate tax penalty which hits 8 million American families of four with a tax increase amounting to$2,000

·         The repeal of heavy taxes on medical device and prescription drug manufacturers

·         Repealing tax increases on families with high medical bills

·         Increasing the ability for families to save for healthcare costs in Health Savings Accounts (HSAs) and Flexible Spending Accounts (FSAs)

·         Eliminating the tax on health insurance, which affects 11 million households that purchase care through the individual insurance market and 23 million households covered through their jobs

·         Eliminating the tax on net investment income that hinders small businesses

In total, the BCRA will reduce taxes by $701 billion over the next decade. This is a huge win for taxpayers, especially middle class American families. Read the full piece here.

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List of Obamacare Taxes Repealed in Senate Health Bill

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Posted by Alex Hendrie on Thursday, June 29th, 2017, 4:41 PM PERMALINK

The Senate health bill abolishes the following Obamacare taxes:

  • Abolishes the Obamacare Individual Mandate Tax which hits 8 million Americans each year. Combined with the Employer Mandate Tax listed immediately below, this is a $137 billion tax cut.
  • Abolishes the Obamacare Employer Mandate Tax. Combined with the Individual Mandate Tax listed immediately above, this is a $137 billion tax cut.
  • Abolishes Obamacare’s Medicine Cabinet Tax which hits 20 million Americans with Health Savings Accounts and 30 million Americans with Flexible Spending Accounts. This is a $5.6 billion tax cut.
  • Abolishes Obamacare’s Flexible Spending Account tax on 30 million Americans. This is a $18.6 billion tax cut.
  • Abolishes Obamacare’s Chronic Care Tax on 10 million Americans with high out of pocket medical expenses. This is a $36 billion tax cut.
  • Abolishes Obamacare’s HSA withdrawal tax. This is a $100 million tax cut.
  • Abolishes Obamacare’s 10% excise tax on small businesses with indoor tanning services. This is a $600 million tax cut.
  • Abolishes the Obamacare health insurance tax. This is a $144.7 billion tax cut.
  • Abolishes the Obamacare 3.8% tax on investment income. This is a $172 billion tax cut.
  • Abolishes the Obamacare medical device tax. This is a $19.6 billion tax cut.
  • Abolishes the Obamacare tax on prescription medicine. This is a $25.7 billion tax cut.
  • Abolishes the Obamacare 0.9 Medicare payroll tax increase. This is a $58.6 billion tax cut.
  • Abolishes the Obamacare tax on retiree prescription drug coverage. This is a $1.8 billion tax cut.
  • Abolishes the Obamacare remuneration tax increase on insurers. This is a $500 million tax cut.
  • The bill also delays (until 2026) the “Cadillac” tax on employer-provided insurance. This saves taxpayers $66 billion over the next ten years.

 

President Obama had promised repeatedly that he would not raise any form of tax on any American earning less than $250,000 per year, but he broke the promise when he signed Obamacare. Now, passage of the Senate’s Better Care Reconciliation Act means tens of millions of middle income Americans will get tax relief from Obamacare's long list of tax hikes.

Here is a more detailed list of the Obamacare taxes abolished in the Senate Bill:

Individual Mandate Tax and Employer Mandate Tax: Under Obamacare, anyone not buying “qualifying” health insurance – as defined by the Obama-era Department of Health and Human Services -- must pay an income surtax to the IRS. In 2015, eight million households paid this tax. Most make less than $250,000. The Obama administration creepily used the Orwellian phrase “shared responsibility payment” to describe this tax. The Senate health bill repeals this tax and the employer mandate tax, saving Americans $137 billion over the next ten years.

For tax year 2016, the tax is a minimum of $695 for individuals, while families of four have to pay a minimum of $2,085.

 

Households w/ 1 Adult

 

Households w/ 2 Adults

Households w/ 2 Adults & 2 children

 

2.5% AGI/$695

 

2.5% AGI/$1390

2.5% AGI/$2085

 

Medicine Cabinet Tax on HSAs and FSAs: Under Obamacare, the 20.2 million Americans with a Health Savings Account and the 30 million covered by a Flexible Spending Account are no longer able to purchase over-the-counter medicines using these pre-tax account funds. Examples include cold, cough, and flu medicine, menstrual cramp relief medication, allergy medicines, and dozens of other common medicine cabinet health items. The Senate health bill will abolish this tax, saving Americans $5.6 billion over the next ten years.

Flexible Spending Account Tax: Under Obamacare, the 30 million Americans who use a pre-tax Flexible Spending Account (FSA) at work to pay for their family’s basic medical needs face an Obamacare-imposed cap of $2,500. The Senate health bill will abolish this tax, saving Americans $18.6 billion over the next ten years.

Before Obamacare, the accounts were unlimited under federal law, though employers were allowed to set a cap. Now, parents looking to sock away extra money to pay for braces find themselves quickly hitting this new cap, meaning they have to pony up some or all of the cost with after-tax dollars. Needless to say, this tax especially impacts middle class families.

There is one group of FSA owners for whom this new cap is particularly cruel and onerous: parents of special needs children. Families with special needs children often use FSAs to pay for special needs education. Tuition rates at special needs schools can run thousands of dollars per year. Under tax rules, FSA dollars can be used to pay for this type of special needs education. This Obamacare tax increase limits the options available to these families.

Chronic Care Tax: Under Obamacare, this income tax increase directly targets middle class Americans with high medical bills. The tax hits 10 million households every year. Before Obamacare, Americans facing high medical expenses were allowed an income tax deduction to the extent that those expenses exceeded 7.5 percent of adjusted gross income (AGI). Obamacare now imposes a threshold of 10 percent of AGI. Therefore, Obamacare not only makes it more difficult to claim this deduction, it widens the net of taxable income.

According to the IRS, approximately 10 million families took advantage of this tax deduction each year before Obamacare. Almost all were middle class: The average taxpayer claiming this deduction earned just over $53,000 annually in 2010. ATR estimates that the average income tax increase for the average family claiming this tax benefit is about $200 - $400 per year.

The Senate health bill will abolish this tax, saving Americans $36 billion over the next ten years.

HSA Withdrawal Tax Hike: Under Obamacare, this provision increases the tax on non-medical early withdrawals from an HSA from 10 to 20 percent, disadvantaging them relative to IRAs and other tax-advantaged accounts, which remain at 10 percent. The Senate health bill will abolish this tax, saving Americans $100 million over the next ten years.

Ten Percent Excise Tax on Indoor Tanning: The Obamacare 10 percent tanning tax has wiped out an estimated 10,000 tanning salons, many owned by women. This Obamacare tax increase was the first to go into effect (July 2010). This petty, burdensome, nanny-state tax affects both the business owner and the end user. Industry estimates show that 30 million Americans visit an indoor tanning facility in a given year, and over 50 percent of salon owners are women. The Senate health bill will abolish this tax, saving Americans $600 million over the next ten years.

Health Insurance Tax: In addition to mandating the purchase of health insurance through the individual mandate tax, Obamacare directly increases the cost of insurance through the health insurance tax.

The total revenue this tax collects is set annually by Treasury and is then divided amongst insurers relative to the premiums they collect each year. While it is directly levied on the industry, the costs of the health insurance tax are inevitably passed on to small businesses that provide healthcare to their employees, middle class families through higher premiums, seniors who purchase Medicare advantage coverage, and the poor who rely on Medicaid managed care.

According to the American Action Forum, the Obamacare health insurance tax will increase premiums by up to $5,000 over a decade and will directly impact 1.7 million small businesses, 11 million households that purchase through the individual insurance market and 23 million households covered through their jobs. The tax is also economically destructive – the National Federation for Independent Businesses estimates the tax could cost up to 286,000 in new jobs and cost small businesses $33 billion in lost sales by 2023.

The Senate health bill will abolish this tax, saving Americans $144.7 billion over the next ten years.

Surtax on Investment Income: Obamacare created a new, 3.8 percent surtax on investment income earned in households making at least $250,000 ($200,000 for singles). This created a new top capital gains tax rate of 23.8%.

The capital gains tax hits income that has already been subjected to individual income taxes and is then reinvested in assets that spur new jobs, higher wages, and increased economic growth. Much of the “gains” associated with the capital gains tax is due to inflation and studies have shown that even supposedly modest increases in the capital gains tax have strong negative economic effects.

The Senate health bill will abolish this tax, saving Americans $172 billion over the next ten years.

Payroll Tax Hike: Obamacare imposes an additional 0.9 percent payroll tax on individuals making $200,000 or couples making more than $250,000. The Senate health bill will abolish this tax, saving Americans $58.6 billion over the next ten years.

Tax on Medical Device Manufacturers: Under Obamacare, this law imposes a new 2.3% excise tax on all sales of medical devices. The tax applies even if the company has no profits in a given year. The Senate health bill will abolish this tax, saving Americans $19.6 billion over the next ten years.

Tax on Prescription Medicine: Obamacare imposed a tax on the producers of prescription medicine based on relative share of sales. The Senate health bill will abolish this tax, saving Americans $25.7 billion over the next ten years.

Elimination of Deduction for Retiree Prescription Drug Coverage: The Senate health bill will abolish this tax, saving Americans $1.8 billion over the next ten years.

“Obamacare promised to reduce individual insurance premiums – a lot. Premiums rose – a lot,” said Grover Norquist, president of Americans for Tax Reform. Obama promised no tax hikes on anyone earning less than $250,000 – that was a lie. Taxes increased. Healthcare costs increased. Obamacare failed. By its own promised goals, it failed. It is time to repeal failure and reform healthcare to protect consumers, not bureaucracy.”

 

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ATR and Digital Liberty Support Brendan Carr for FCC Commissioner

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Posted by Americans for Tax Reform on Thursday, June 29th, 2017, 3:05 PM PERMALINK

Yesterday, President Donald J. Trump signaled his intent to nominate Brendan Carr as Commissioner to the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) for the remaining term ending in June 13, 2018 and an additional term of 5 years expiring June 13, 2023. Carr has served at the Commission for five years and currently serves as the General Counsel of the FCC where he is the chief legal advisor to the FCC.

The following can be attributed to Grover Norquist, President of Americans for Tax Reform:

“I congratulate Brendan Carr for his upcoming nomination to the FCC. Throughout his past five years at the Commission, Carr has created a distinguished record as top advisor to then Commissioner Ajit Pai and as the General Counsel to the Commission. Carr will be a strong asset to the Commission. I applaud the president’s choice for FCC Commissioner and I urge the Senate to confirm his nomination.”

The following can be attributed to Katie McAuliffe, Executive Director of Digital Liberty:

“Brendan Carr has a distinguished record at the commission throughout his past five years of service in his various roles including his position as the Commission’s General Counsel.  I congratulate him on his coming nomination.

“His knowledge of wireless policy and public safety will aid the Commission in making key decisions within the FCC’s broad jurisdiction. Carr’s elevation to Commissioner ensures that there are 5 in-the-weeds experts directing the FCC’s activity, eliminating the learning curve and demonstrating the Presidents understanding of how important the telecommunications industry is to our country’s economic future. I applaud the President’s intent to nominate Carr to serve as an FCC Commissioner and I urge all Senators to confirm his nomination.”

Traditionally, Presidents nominate at least one Commissioner from the other party and are voted on and confirmed in the Senate together. Since no party can have more than a one vote majority, President Trump also recently nominated Jessica Rosenworcel who served as the Democratic commissioner until 2016. If confirmed, FCC leadership would have five members, filling all remaining commissioner seats at the FCC.   

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