Friday, December 9, 2016

Repealing Obamacare Is a Tax Cut for the Rich and a Tax Hike for the Middle and Working Classes

Obamacare was funded -- and Medicare strengthened -- in part through tax increases on high-end earners. By cutting those taxes, the rich get richer and the middle and working classes get poorer as they pay more for healthcare. As for the poor, they're screwed either way.

Speaker Paul Ryan can't believe his luck. Donald Trump is a dream come true.

It's not all about ending affordable healthcare for those who finally achieved it under Barack Obama. There's more! As in tax cuts! From TPM:
Republican plans to repeal the Affordable Care Act without a replacement — which health care policy experts predict could cost 30 million people their health insurance — will also bring a major tax break for high-income Americans.
Two taxes that will be presumably axed with the law affect only those making $200,000 or more. The break the ACA repeal will bring to those taxpayers will amount to a $346 billion tax cut in total over 10 years, according to the CBO report on the 2015 repeal legislation GOP lawmakers say they’ll be using as their model next year.
The beauty of this is that Trump has sorta kinda promised his tax cuts would be paid for -- assuming Trump means anything in particular when he makes a promise. But with the tax cuts built into repealing Obamacare, it's a freebee, especially if no one does the math.
“Repealing the Affordable Care Act is a way to give wealthy people a fairly substantial tax cut without that necessarily being the largest headline,” Harry Stein, the director of fiscal policy at the left-leaning think tank Center for American Progress, told TPM.
The taxes in question are known as the Medicare tax on higher income individuals and the net investment income tax. The former is a 0.9 percent tax placed on those who earn $200,000 or more individually (or $250,000 for married couples who file jointly). It comes on top of the Medicare payroll tax employees pay together with their employers, but only applies to the income that exceeds the $200,000 threshold.
The GOP has equivocated on its promise to repeal and replace Obamacare because they'd never done the math, which, they discover, would throw the health insurance system into utter chaos. Hence the "repeal now, replace later" with a built-in two- or three-year holding pattern. But now GOPers want to flat-out repeal with no replacement because they've never seen a tax cut they didn't like. To hell with healthcare.
Tax-cut cheerleaders are already celebrating this effect of a Obamacare repeal.
“To me personally, that’s the best part about repealing Obamacare,” Ryan Ellis, former tax policy director for Grover Norquist’s Americans for Tax Reform, told Politico. “Because on the health care side of it, you have this complicated ‘replace’ that you have to turn to after that, but on taxes, it’s all easy — it’s all dessert.”
Some Republicans are gleeful that they can say "we didn't repeal Obamacare, we just eliminated the HUGE TAX INCREASES, it's your money!", while not admitting that defunding means utter collapse. And I've always felt that the Republican game would be to say "See what the Democrats did to you? First they rip you off with Obamacare and now they take away your health insurance because Obamacare is the reason you don't have healthcare now. Don't blame us, we're just trying to fix it. They did it!"

Watch and see. They'll be blaming Obama as long as they can, one way or another.

No comments:

Post a Comment