‘Shared responsibility payment’ imposing the poor on health care.

At least, that’s the Senate version of the Health, Education, Labor, & Pensions committee bill on health care rationing: the House version has the elementary decency to call it a ‘tax.’

Legal Insurrection walks through the procedure: the short version is that both versions of the bill require that employers give the IRS information on who they’re insuring, during what periods, and… some-things-to-be-determined later. If that last clause doesn’t worry you, then why they want that information should:

The House bill provides for a tax on people who do not have acceptable coverage at “any time” during the tax year. House bill section 401 provides for a new section 59B (at pp. 167-168) of the Internal Revenue Code:

(a) TAX IMPOSED.—In the case of any individual who does not meet the requirements of subsection (d) at any time during the taxable year, there is hereby imposed a tax equal to 2.5 percent of the excess of—
(1) the taxpayer’s modified adjusted gross income for the taxable year, over
(2) the amount of gross income specified in section 6012(a)(1) with respect to the taxpayer.

The Senate version is similar, although the tax is called a “shared responsibility payment” not a tax.

In other words, if you have no coverage and you work: you’ll get taxed for it.  If you have insufficient coverage and you work: you’ll get taxed for it.  If a government agency decides that you have insufficient coverage: you’ll get taxed for it.  If the records get lost: you’ll get taxed for it. And so on, and so on, and so on.  With the best will in the world (and I don’t wish to bash the IRS here; compared to any number of historical examples our tax collectors wear halos), we still end up with a government agency being abruptly saddled with an insanely complicated task that they were not particularly set up to process.  Chaos would follow the imposition of this scheme as surely as day follows night.

Also, please remember: if the Democrats had had their way, the final decision on whether or not to go forward with this plan would have already have been made.  And nobody reading this would have had a voice in said decision, either.

Moe Lane

Crossposted to RedState.

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