MIDDLE-CLASS TAX INCREASE IS THE WRONG APPROACH -- (House of Representatives - January 30, 2007)
Mr. SIRES. Madam Speaker, Health and Human Services Secretary Mike Leavitt is about to begin a 100-day public relations effort to build support for the President's health care proposal. Democrats here in Washington in Congress want to work towards reducing the number of uninsured. Unfortunately, the tax deduction proposal will do very little to assist the 47 million Americans who are now living without health insurance.
The President touts his plan as a way to give low-income uninsured Americans more money in their pockets to help them buy their own health insurance. It sounds good, but the President ignores two facts.
First, the President's plan does not provide enough of a benefit for low-income Americans. A tax deduction is of little value to low-income workers, who in many cases will receive little more than $1,200 a year back from the Federal Government. That might sound like a lot, but health insurance costs the average family almost $11,000 a year. This small deduction will continue to make health care out of reach.
Madam Speaker, unfortunately, the President's proposal is not the right approach.