Baucus Healthcare Bill Violates Obama Tax Pledge

Posted by John Kartch on Wednesday, September 16th, 2009, 1:31 PM PERMALINK

At least five tax hikes in the bill violate Obama’s central campaign promise not to raise “any form” of taxes on families making less than $250,000

The healthcare reform plan unveiled today by Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus (D-Mont.) contains at least five tax increases on families making less than $250,000 per year. Each provision would violate President Obama’s central campaign promise not to raise “any form” of taxes on these Americans. The tax increases include:

Individual Mandate Tax:  Those who do not enroll in a health insurance plan would have to pay a new tax in the following range: 

100-300% FPL
300+% FPL
Medicine Cabinet Tax:  Americans will no longer be able to purchase over-the-counter medicines with their FSA, HSA, or HRA.
Backdoor Death of HSAs: By requiring that all plans (besides the few that are grandfathered) provide first-dollar coverage for most services, there would be no HSA-qualifying plans available from the Massachusetts-style exchanges.
Increase in Non-Qualified HSA Distribution Tax Penalty from 10 percent to 20 percent: This makes HSAs less attractive, and paves the way for HSA pre-verification.
A Cap on FSA Contributions at $2000: Currently unlimited.


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