Michelle Malkin
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The greatest gifts you can give your children can't be boxed and bowed. Consider the timeless gift of self-sufficiency -- a stubborn thirst to leave the nest, make it on your own and live as a free-willed adult. It's a concept that Big Nanny Democrats are sabotaging at every legislative turn.

Several times during the sneaky debate on the government health care takeover bill this past Sunday, Democrats hailed a provision requiring insurance plans that cover dependents to provide benefits to children up to age 26. Democratic Sens. Ben Cardin and Tom Harkin both specifically championed the unfunded mandate in their floor statements.

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This manifestation of the Nanny State is especially galling given the massive levels of generational theft the Democratic majority has presided over this past year. If they truly cared about the physical and financial well-being of young Americans, they'd stop piling on expensive regulations that simply put affordable health insurance out of their reach.

I propose a new symbol for the Democrats. Out: donkey. In: a giant adult pacifier.

I can tell you what most fiscally responsible parents are thinking when they hear the feds "taking care" of everyone else's adult "children" by confiscating their tax dollars and forcing private companies to comply: You've got to be kidding me. Yes, Virginia, there are still some of us left who believe our children shouldn't depend on a government-manufactured umbilical cord as they approach their third decade on earth.

Nonetheless, there are now an estimated 20 states that have already passed legislation requiring insurers to cover adult children. The slacker mandates cover "kids" ranging in age from 24 to 31. And it's these government health care mandates that are driving up the cost of insurance.

Health policy researcher Nathan Benefield of the Commonwealth Foundation reported that in New Jersey, Nanny State peddlers claimed the adult kiddie protection law would help 100,000 uninsured young adults. "Yet in two years, only 6 percent of that estimate has been realized. The primary reason -- health insurance is still too expensive."

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Michelle Malkin

Michelle Malkin is the author of "Culture of Corruption: Obama and his Team of Tax Cheats, Crooks & Cronies" (Regnery 2010).

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