Taxing health care


Published: Thursday, February 1, 2007 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Wednesday, January 31, 2007 at 10:57 p.m.

"The president's proposal would mean the end of employer-based benefits as we know it."

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Tribune Media Services

Paul Fronstin, researcher for the Employee Benefit Research Institute, on President Bush's new health care funding proposal.

It's been estimated that just half of the $200 billion Americans are spending each year on the war in Iraq, would finance a universal health care plan. President Bush now proposes to tax employer-provided health care plans in order to finance coverage for an estimated 3 million to 5 million Americans. The problem: There are now an estimated 39 million Americans without coverage. Taxing employer-provided health coverage would likely encourage some companies to stop providing coverage altogether. "It gives employers a way out of providing the benefits because their employees could get the same tax break on their own," Fronstin told the New York times last week.

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