Do these Democrats really think that they’re helping anyone by threatening to take their earnings away via the IRS? Do they thnk the American people see the IRS as anything but a necessary evil at best, and certainly not the go-between for health care?
Like Clinton (and unlike Obama), Edwards’ health-care plan would require every American to have health insurance.
But unlike Clinton, Edwards is now detailing how he would enforce his mandate.
Under the Edwards plan, when Americans file their income taxes, they would be required to submit a letter from an insurance provider confirming coverage for themselves and their dependents.
If someone did not submit proof of coverage, the Internal Revenue Service would notify a newly established regional or state-based health-care agency (which Edwards has dubbed a Health Care Market).
Those regional agencies would then evaluate whether the uninsured individual was eligible for Medicare (which covers those over 65), Medicaid (which covers the indigent), or S-CHIP (the State Children’s Health Insurance Program which targets the working poor).
If the individual was not eligible for either of those existing public programs, the regional-health care agency would enroll the individual into the lowest cost health-care plan available in that area. The lowest-cost option could be a new Medicare-like public option or a private insurance plan.
The newly covered individual would not only have access to health benefits but would also be responsible for making monthly payments with the help of a tax credit.
The exact size of the financial obligation would vary according to a person’s income (lower-income Americans would receive larger tax credits).
If a person did not meet his or her monthly financial obligation for a set period of time (perhaps a year, perhaps longer) the Edwards plan would empower the federal government to garnish an individual’s wages for purposes of collecting “back premiums with interest and collection costs.”
Obviously, when I likened Edwards’ plan to jackbooting health care, I wasn’t kidding. If anything, I was understating Silky’s totalitarian tendencies.