Republican Tax Plan Raises Taxes And Health Care Premiums

The latest edition of the Senate Republican tax plan released late last night would raise health care insurance premiums on middle-class families, while also raising their taxes, and would leave millions more without health insurance – all in the interest of making tax cuts for wealthy corporations permanent.

The Republican tax plan would repeal the individual mandate, which 16 patient and consumer groups called “a step backwards for individuals and families.”

Los Angeles Times: “On Tuesday, 16 leading consumer and patient groups together expressed alarm at the proposal. ‘Repealing the individual mandate without otherwise increasing access to adequate, affordable health insurance is a step backwards for individuals and families,’ noted the groups, which include the American Heart Assn., the American Lung Assn., the March of Dimes, Consumers Union and the advocacy arm of the American Cancer Society.”

The Republican tax plan could trigger $25 billion in cuts to Medicare and leave 13 million more Americans without health insurance.

The Hill: “The GOP tax bill could trigger automatic cuts worth $136 billion from mandatory spending in 2018, including $25 billion in Medicare cuts, if Congress doesn’t find another way to offset its deficit increases, according to the Congressional Budget Office (CBO).”

CBO: “The number of people with health insurance would decrease by 4 million in 2019 and 13 million in 2027.”

The tax plan would raise premiums by double-digits and cause insurers to leave markets.

NBC News: “Premiums on the individual insurance market would also go up 10 percent as a result.”

Huffington Post: “But insurers would almost surely react by raising premiums even higher than they would otherwise and, in some cases, abandoning markets where they were planning to keep selling coverage.”

These changes to the tax plan, aimed at making tax cuts for wealthy corporations permanent, would especially hurt lower- and middle-income families, who already got the short end of the stick from the Republican tax plan.

New York Times: “They also have made a calculated gamble to help speed their bill to passage on a party-line vote: Republicans revealed late Tuesday they would set all of their tax cuts for individuals to expire at the end of 2025, to comply with a procedural requirement. Their deep cut in the corporate tax rate would remain permanent.”

New York Times: “Mitch McConnell, the Senate majority leader, acknowledged on Friday that the Republican tax plan might result in a tax hike for some working Americans, saying he ‘misspoke’ days earlier when he said that ‘nobody in the middle class is going to get a tax increase’ under the Senate bill… The Senate bill unveiled on Thursday would raise taxes on millions of middle-class families, according to a preliminary New York Times analysis. The plan would also disproportionately benefit high earners and corporations.”

Huffington Post: “As for the millions without insurance, they would be newly exposed to crippling medical bills. By and large, they would be lower- and middle-income people ― who almost certainly would also benefit the least from the broader tax cuts Republicans have in mind.”