Ah yes, yet another confutation of an original government estimate, and not in a direction that sounds favorable for our economic outlook — will all of these earth-shattering wonders about the hidden costs of ObamaCare never cease? (Hint: Don’t hold your breath.) The Washington Times reports:

Six million Americans will pay the health care tax rather than obtain coverage under President Obama’s health care law, according to a new Congressional Budget Office estimate Wednesday — a 50 percent increase over CBO’s estimate of just two years ago.

CBO also said there will be 30 million people without insurance, though all but the 6 million will be exempt from the tax. The exempt Americans are a combination of illegal immigrants and those with incomes too low to pay income taxes.

The agency said the government will collect about $7 billion from the tax in 2016, and $8 billion a year thereafter.

One of the reasons the CBO cited for upping their estimate on the number of people who will pay the penalty is the enduring overall crumminess of our economy, meaning that they now expect that more people than originally anticipated will be unemployed, which in turn will make it harder to for people to buy insurance coverage. Man, all of the Obama administration’s many and various attempts at social engineering just don’t seem to be working out for them, do they?

And hey, hold on a second — what is it that President Obama’s always saying about not raising taxes a single penny on the middle class? ‘Cause, via the AP, emphasis mine…

Nearly 6 million Americans – most of them in the middle class – will face a tax penalty for not carrying medical coverage once President Barack Obama’s health care overhaul law is fully in place, congressional budget analysts said Wednesday. …

Nonetheless, in his first campaign for the White House, Obama pledged not to raise taxes on individuals making less than $200,000 a year and couples making less than $250,000.

Can somebody please explain to me again how coercing people into buying a product/service or paying a penalty is somehow not a tax that also violates individual freedom? Because I’m still not getting it.