TAX GIVEAWAY FOR THE RICH
The House Republicans, under Representative Paul Ryan’s leadership, recently attempted to quickly push their bill, the American Health Care Act (AHCA), through congressional committees to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act. Only two days after the AHCA was unveiled, House Committees were voting on it, before the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) even had a chance to release a report analyzing the bill’s projected effect on consumers, health care providers, insurance companies, and the federal budget.
Joe Baker of the Medicare Rights Center (MRC), is troubled by the feverish rate with which Ryan is proceeding and the lack of transparency in the secretive, rushed manner the bill has been debated and advanced.
MRC predicts the AHCA will result in:
1) higher health care costs or coverage losses for seniors, people with disabilities, and their families;
2) insurance coverage that is far more expensive for folks in their 50’s and 60’s who are not yet eligible for Medicare, and for people on Social Security Disability who are in a two-year Medicare waiting period;
3) lower assistance levels to help people afford insurance premiums; 4) scaling back coverage for folks needing Medicaid assistance to cover long-term health care and nursing home services, resulting in waiting lists, unaffordable financial obligations, and restricted access to needed care; and
5) a tax windfall for the wealthiest Americans at Medicare’s expense.
Richard Eskow, in “The American Health Care Act Is a Wealth Grab, Not a Health Plan,” at https://ourfuture.org/, says the 400 richest households in the country will get an average tax break of $7 million per year under the Republican plan, exacerbating our already high levels of wealth inequality. This estimated $346 billion in tax cuts for the wealthy over ten years will decrease funding for Medicare in that amount, hurting Medicare’s strong financial footing.
Subsidies for insurance currently tied to low incomes will give way to tax credits which get incrementally higher with age, further hurting younger low-income folks struggling to make ends meet.
Health Savings Accounts (HSAs) will have higher limits under the Republican plan. These accounts allow people to make tax-deductible contributions to tax-free savings accounts to use for future health care costs. This tax break doesn’t help folks living paycheck-to-paycheck.
Contact President Trump and your US Senators and Representative to tell them the irresponsible way the Republicans are approaching health care reform is doing irreparable harm to the current health care system by throwing it into a state of chaos and uncertainty, the costs for which the Republicans will be held accountable.
Tell them the Republican AHCA fails to help those who need it most to gain access to affordable health care. Tell them that trying to rush this ill-advised legislation through Congress is quickly being seen for what it is: a thinly veiled tax giveaway for the rich. Tell them that this plan is a huge betrayal of Trump’s campaign promise to preserve Medicare and Medicaid with no cuts to the programs.
|President Donald Trump
The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20500
|Senator Ron Johnson
328 Hart Senate Office Building
Washington, DC 20510
|Senator Tammy Baldwin
709 Hart Senate Office Building
Washington, DC 20510
|Representative Sean Duffy
2330 Rayburn HOB
Washington, DC 20515