John McCain’s Health Care Plan Would Raise Taxes For Middle-Class

John McCain's Health Insurance Plan
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There is an interesting relationship between John McCain's proposed health care plan and the taxes for the middle-class, but before we look into McCain's plan let's ask the following. If a person cannot afford health insurance for himself or his family (average cost of insurance is $12,000/year), will a refundable tax credit of $2,500 for an individual and $5,000 for a family make a difference? Can a person earning less than $40,000/year afford to pay $7,000 in insurance payments? The uninsured, many of them employed in low wage jobs, simply cannot afford the health insurance premiums.

John McCain says his proposed health care plan would provide health insurance coverage to more people at lower cost and he promises his plan would put “individuals and families back in charge.” But he also wants to open up a national market, free of state oversight where health insurance companies would continue to price people with pre-existing illnesses out of the market.

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McCain’s tax credits are indexed to inflation, not to premiums. Since health care premiums are rising at a rate 2-3 times inflation, his proposal would actually cause a large tax increase for the middle class. Because his plan eliminates the tax exclusion for employer-provided insurance, workers will pay income and payroll taxes on their health benefits. The new credit will soon turn into a tax increase because of the rising health care costs.

Additionally, the tax credits are the same, either $2,500 for individuals or $5,000 for families, and this simplistic one-size-fits-all fails to recognize that some households must pay much higher premiums because of age, health, family size or even where they live. There is no provision in his plan to control costs. There is also no provision for patients to get public information on quality of care or costs of procedures.

The McCain Health Plan is also more costly than Obama’s plan for covering all Americans. The McCain plan would cost taxpayers $1.3 billion and the Brookings Institution Tax Policy Center estimated that McCain’s plan was seven times more expensive than Obama’s at covering the uninsured.

In a recent issue of the magazine of the American Academy of Actuaries, McCain is quoted, “Opening up the health insurance market to more vigorous nationwide competition, as we have done over the last decade with banking, would provide more choices of innovative products less burdened by the worst excesses of state-based regulation.” What the free market has given us in the banking and finance industry can be repeated in health care? Where do we sign up?

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Comments

Seems we Americans wait until there is a total break-down before we reach the conclusion that something doesn't work. Looks like we're headed the same direction with Health Care as we did with banking. Not a very practical method of planning.
With the way the economy is going everybody will be out of work-That will mean no money for groceries and the Nation will lose all the Obesity that is causing the Healthcare Problems and become amazingly more healthy and active. Plus the additional exercise of pounding the pavement will improve the cardiovascular system and not worrying about what the Bush-Cheney Administration is going to next will allow a full eight hours of sleep and the entire Nation will recover from sleep deprivation which is known to cause serious health problems. The REAL loser and if you have stock in the Pharmacuetical Companies, start selling immediately as the big pill poppin days are over even with "Generics!"
Tax credits for insurance is not the answer to those who can't afford it in any case. Moreover, McCain will do nothing for those with pre-existing conditions. His old idea of creating a high risk pool is already a demonstrated failure. He also wants to tax healthcare benefits from employers indirectly canceling the tax credit. We are the only developed country that does not have healthcare available to all of its citizens without question. We have 47 million people in this country without any healthcare coverage whatsoever. We already have a working model for broad healthcare, it is called Medicare and it does work. We need to expand it to cover everyone. No citizen should ever be denied medical care they need whether or not they unemployed, whether or not they can afford health insurance, whether or not they have cancer or heart disease or asthma or any pre-existing condition! It is a fundamental human right. With no new ideas McCain has his head stuck in the past still spouting free-market slogans (like Wall St.) and protecting the insurers, not the patients.
Have you not been watching the news? We all know now thanks to Google that this financial crisis was caused by over-regulation (community reinvestment act of 1977). De-regulation spurs competition and competition spurs lower prices. That is what we need in the health care industry........more competition.
The free market isn't what caused the problems in the banking and finance industry, it was the government. The Fed artificially lowered the interest rates taking away the balance of the free markets and creating a bubble. Do your homework. Health care is also seeing it's costs rise because of government control. The trend is clear as day. These people know nothing about health care yet they wish to control it. If you want the government to control your life, you can sign up, but leave the rest of us out of it!
When Bush and the Republicans blew up the size of government, and started borrowing like mad for the war, the FED was supposed to jack interest rates way up, as we compete with the government for loans. This would have deflated the housing prices naturally. Now we are paying for all their greed and mismanagement. How can I trust McCain on Health Care? I know republicans sounds all squishy nice with their lower tax, lower spending rhetoric. Its the best sales pitch they got, but they haven't delivered, either during Bush 2 or Reagan. We just can't trust them to be fiscally responsible with our money.