Congressman Leonard Lance (NJ-07) voted late Tuesday in favor of a Republican proposal to repeal the so-called "individual mandate" in the new health reform law. Twenty-one Democrats joined 166 Republicans in support of the repeal, but the effort failed 187 to 230.
"The health care law presents hard-working, tax-paying Americans a stark choice -- buy government-approved health insurance or pay a hefty tax," Lance said.
The individual mandate is a key provision in the new health care law requiring every individual and small businesses to purchase health insurance or face burdensome federal fines -- $695 for individuals; $2,000 per employees for small businesses. Federal officials estimate that the mandate will require the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) to hire 16,500 more staff.
For his part, Congressman Leonard Lance was the first member of the New Jersey congressional delegation to call for a repeal and replacement of the health care law and replace it with sensible health care reform proposals. These reforms include allowing insurance to be sold across state lines, establishing high-risk insurance pools, limiting frivolous lawsuits and prohibiting insurance companies from discriminating on the basis of pre-existing conditions.
"The vote to repeal the individual mandate is the first salvo in the effort to repeal the unaffordable ObamaCare and replace it with fiscally responsible health care solutions that lower the cost of health insurance," Lance concluded.