New health plan would hurt the non-rich
To the editor:
The proposed House bill to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act, if adopted, will hurt enrollees while providing big tax breaks for wealthy Americans.
Under the current ACA, someone in the 21st Congressional District earning $25,000 per year can qualify for about $3,500 in premium subsidies. Under the bill, this would be cut to a flat $2,000. Any subsidy for out-of-pocket costs would drop to zero. The nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office issued a report this week estimating that many millions of people will lose coverage if this bill becomes law. How many of them will be our neighbors?
The big reason for this “repeal and replace” is to repeal the ACA’s 1 percent surtax on wealthy Americans earning over $2 million per year, as well as to eliminate the surtax on health insurers, pharmaceutical companies (remember the $600 Epipen, which used to be $100?) and investors. These funds paid for the ACA subsidies. Under the House bill, the wealthy will see a big tax cut while low-paid, middle-class working Americans will take the hit. Ironically, many of those who will be hurt probably voted for the president. Is this what they expected?
Claire G. Gilmore