Sunday Blitz Wrap-up: ABC This Week

This Week with George Stephanopoulos on ABC

STEPHANOPOULOS:

during the campaign. Under this mandate, the government is forcing people to spend money, fining you if you don’t.  How is that not a tax?

OBAMA:

No. That’s not true, George. The — for us to say that you’ve got to take a responsibility to get health insurance is absolutely not a tax increase. What it’s saying is, is that we’re not going to have other people carrying your burdens for you anymore than the fact that right now everybody in America, just about, has to get auto insurance. Nobody considers that a tax increase.

Hmmm, lets consider what Obama said:

we’re not going to have other people carrying your burdens for you anymore:

Okay, Yes, high-5’s all around, that is what we all want to hear, right?  Everybody on their own, the government butts out, we are all good.  Right?  Not so fast, because I don’t think that is what he really meant.  Just look at what the Congressional Budget Office wrote on 9/22/09 evaluating the subsidies in the Senate Bill.   Congressional Budget Office (CBO) 9/22/09 Analysis of Premiums states on page 1:

You asked for additional analysis of the subsidies that enrollees would receive for premiums and cost sharing—and the amounts they would have to pay, on average—if they purchased coverage in the new insurance exchanges that would be established under the Chairman’s proposal.Those subsidies and payments would vary depending on an individual’s or family’s income relative to the federal poverty level (FPL).

There will be subsidies–that means the burden of some are carried by others.  So he must have been mistaken or possibly have mis-spoke.

Here is another from the CBO letter on page 6:

At the same time, premiums in the new insurance exchanges would tend to be higher than the average premiums in the current-law individual market—again with other factors held equal—because the new policies would have to cover preexisting medical conditions and could not deny coverage to people with high expected costs for health care.

This means that costs will go up as we provide coverage to everyone, again spreading the costs and burden across many.

On to Obama’s next statement:

Nobody considers that a tax increase.

Here is more from the CBO report, page 2:

The projected premium amounts for exchange plans do not include the effect of the excise tax on insurance plans with relatively high premiums, because individually purchased plans would not be subject to that excise tax.

This CBO report provides information only for coverage purchased through the exchange.  But with this statement, it indicates there is an excise tax on plans with higher premiums. When is a tax, not a tax?

On to the next statement?

right now everybody in America, just about, has to get auto insurance.

No, not everybody, only those that decide to buy a car and decide to purchase auto insurance, or we would not have to pay for uninsured motorist protection.

But this does mean that the government will mandate our person-hood costs, either health insurance cost or a fine–you choose one or the other.  This will be enforced by the IRS through your tax return.

Here is more of the the interview:

STEPHANOPOULOS:

How about the funding for ACORN?

OBAMA:

You know, if — frankly, it’s not really something I’ve followed closely. I didn’t even know that ACORN was getting a whole lot of federal money.

STEPHANOPOULOS:

So you’re not committing to — to cut off the federal funding?

OBAMA:

George, this is not the biggest issue facing the country. It’s not something I’m paying a lot of attention to.

That is curious that Obama does not pay attention to ACORN.  He is closely linked to this organization in many roles as reported by Stanley Kurtz in the National Review Online:  community organizer, leadership trainer, lawyer, and as a board member of charitable foundations that directed funds to ACORN.

Watch as Obama invites ACORN to help him set the agenda for his administration.

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