NTF Issue Paper: cong62.doc. 9-18.

BACKGROUND. Congress has so far seemed unable to muster votes necessary to repeal socialist Obama Care completely. However, conservative representatives and senators continue to introduce a series of bills to dismantle parts of Obama Care or delay negative aspects of this socialist legislation. NE Sen. Deb Fischer co-sponsored a bill, the Health Insurance Tax Relief Act, to delay one of the most iniquitous aspects of Obama Care.

THE BILL. S. 3063, sponsored by conservative Sen. John Barrasso (Wyo.) and now assigned to the Senate Finance Committee, would delay re-imposition of the yearly fee on health insurance providers until after 2020. Insurance companies pass along this tax to consumers. Beginning in 2014, Obama Care levied a tax that would exceed $145 billion over 10 years, a sales tax on health insurance coverage. An insurance actuarial analysis found that this tax negatively impacts both consumers and employers by adding to the cost of coverage bought directly from a health insurance plan in both individual and employer markets. It also harms beneficiaries in subsidized programs of Medicaid and Medicare. In January, 2018, recognizing the negative facets of this tax, Congress approved a budget agreement that included only a 1-yr. suspension in 2019; however, this suspension will expire in Dec. 2019. It is crucial for Congress to take action to either repeal or continue the suspension of this tax into 2020 to continue to provide affordability of health insurance for millions of Americans. Not doing so would burden individual consumers, small businesses, and Medicare Advantage enrollees with higher insurance costs. Under Obama Care provisions, the total amount of the health insurance tax sets at $14.3 billion for 2018. Permitting this tax to resume in 2020 will mean higher health care costs for Americans. Because this tax increases annually, Americans will face a higher impact on their 2020 premiums. A suspension, according to the actuarial firm Oliver Wyman, estimates that consumers would see annual savings as follows: Individual coverage, $230, small group coverage $300, large group coverage $280, Medicaid clients $160, and Medicare Advantage users $380. Health insurers already are tabulating their offerings and prices for 2020. Therefore, the Senate must urgently take immediate action for repeal or suspension. S. 3063 would lower premiums for millions and provide relief for working families.

SUPPORTERS. Conservative groups like NTF and the American Farm Bureau all support S. 3063 and actively lobby for its passage. The Bureau believes this bill addresses a major cost concern of farmers and ranchers.

TAKE ACTION NOW. Thank Sen. Fischer for co-sponsoring this bill. Contact Sen. Ben Sasse today to support passage of S. 3063. Use the above content to call in to your local radio talk show and write a short editorial to your local newspaper. Email netaxpayers@gmail.com for senator contact information.

Research, documentation, and analysis for this issue paper done by Nebraska Taxpayers for Freedom. This material copyrighted by Nebraska Taxpayers for Freedom, with express prior permission granted for its use by other groups in the NE Conservative Coalition Network. 9-18. C

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