Wednesday, March 26, 2008

McCain on health care reform

Let me first off say that I believe a McCain presidency would be almost as big a mistake as the Bush presidencies were/are. Occasionally I'll post reasons why.

The first has to do with health care. On his web site's health care page, McCain says, among other things that he would
Reform the tax code to eliminate the bias toward employer-sponsored health insurance, and provide all individuals with a $2,500 tax credit ($5,000 for families) to increase incentives for insurance coverage. Individuals owning innovative multi-year policies that cost less than the full credit can deposit remainder in expanded health savings accounts.

Let's unpack that for a minute. "Eliminate the bias toward employer sponsored health insurance..." What is the bias in the tax code? Employers can deduct the cost of provided insurance from their corporate income. If employers could not deduct these costs, does anyone really believe they would continue to provide it? Think how that would increase their already unsustainable costs. For example, if an employer was paying $10,000 a year for insurance for an employee and they suddenly could not deduct those costs, their real costs for that same benefit could jump as much as 35% to $13500. Bye bye health coverage as a benefit.

So what is McCain's solution then? a $2500 tax credit or $5000 for a family per year. Now, I don't know what insurance costs are where you live but my employer pays a lot more than $5K for my family's insurance. If I could purchase insurance in my area - which I can't because of controlled health issues - it would probably be at least $25K a year and possibly more. That means $20K+ out of my pocket. Of course, we cannot afford that so my controlled medical condition would no longer be controlled and well... you get the picture. And for those folk who are currently uninsured, the tax credit is not enough to enable them to purchase insurance either so it helps nobody.

So what solution does McCain's plan offer to the health care crisis? Even fewer people with adequate health insurance.

Is that the kind of health care reform you want? If it is, vote for John McCain.

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