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January 07, 2010

Remember When Obama Said He Wouldn't Raise Taxes On Those Making Less Than $250K? Let Me Be Perfectly Clear, He Lied

He's now on board with the Senate tax increases for so-called Cadillac Health Care Plans.

President Barack Obama is pushing U.S. House Democrats to drop their opposition to a tax on high- end insurance plans as lawmakers try to craft a final health- care measure by early next month, a Democratic aide said.

The president expressed a preference for a Senate proposal to tax so-called Cadillac plans in a meeting yesterday with House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and top party lawmakers, the aide said. The White House meeting came on the eve of a conference call Pelosi plans for noon today with her chamber’s Democrats.

Pelosi is facing resistance as she tries to resolve differences in House and Senate bills that would mark the biggest changes to U.S. health policy in 45 years. The Cadillac tax is opposed by labor unions, which are among the party’s strongest backers, and 190 House Democrats.

“I realize the White House has a timeline they want to meet here, but particularly on the tax issue, there is great potential for blowback,” said Representative Joe Courtney, a Connecticut Democrat who’s helping lead opposition to the tax.

Gibbsy said yesterday that this tax doesn't violate Obama's pledge because it will be a tax on the company that offers the policy and they won't pass that cost on to customers. Seriously, he said that.

MR. GIBBS: I would disagree with your notion that it is a tax on an individual since the proposal is written as a tax on an insurance company that offers a plan. I would say in terms of Speaker Pelosi, she was here yesterday and I think all involved thought the meeting that they had was very productive.

Q Can I ask just to follow on that, you don't think they pass those taxes on, those costs on to consumers?

MR. GIBBS: I'm not an insurance company broker.

Q Well, it's just obvious. Isn't it self-evident that they would do that?

MR. GIBBS: Not necessarily. They may just not offer --

Q I think any economist would consider it a de facto tax on a --

I don't know what's worse, the fact that he is shamelessly lying or this administration has such a poor grasp on economics. Lying and stupid is no way to go through life.

Also note 'They may just not offer--" bit. It's too bad he got cut off here because obviously he's saying insurance companies may not offer these types of plans any more. That of course violates Obama's 'if you like what you have, you can keep it' promise.

Even dim bulb Bob Herbert in the NY Times didn't buy this spin a few weeks back.

A lot of these plans cover union workers who in many cases bargained for them in exchange for lower wages or other forms of compensation. While I'm not a big fan of big labor, I have to agree with them on their opposition (of course, as big Obama backers they have no one else to blame). They made concessions and agreements in good faith and now the government comes in and says, yeah never mind we have a better use for your resources than you do. If nothing else it has the potential to create a fair number of newly minted conservatives.

At some point people are going to realize this is nothing more than a massive wealth and power grab from the majority of Americas. Unfortunately, it may well be too late by then to do much about it.

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posted by DrewM. at 10:40 AM

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