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Taxing Small Business to Pay for Health Care

In just the past few months, the U.S. House of Representatives has passed some of the most unprecedented pieces of legislation in our nation’s history – changing the course of our nation’s policy dramatically. June brought us the cap-and-trade national energy tax, and July may very well bring a dangerous overhaul to our nation’s health care system in the form of the so-called “government option.”

With issues of this magnitude, it is not only prudent, but incumbent upon each Member of Congress to know precisely what is in a piece of legislation before it’s voted on. This seems elementary and Congress 101 – but believe me – it doesn’t always happen. That’s why I have signed the Let Freedom Ring Health Care Reform Pledge that obligates the signee to oppose any health care proposal a Member has not read and that has not been publicly available for at least 72 hours before it is voted on by Congress.

With an issue as big as the government take-over of our health care system, every single Member of Congress better know what they’re voting on. They say the devil is usually in the details; and a 1000-page bill has a lot of details.  Americans can not afford to let a crushing, big government proposal pass the House without proper oversight and review.

Here’s the harsh reality of what’s facing our nation. Since the recession began, 6,000,000 jobs have been lost.  Yet the Democrats’ health care plan includes hundreds of billions of dollars in new tax hikes on small businesses – our country’s job creation engine. And, despite claims their reform will reduce health care costs, CBO Director Elmendorf told Congress that the Democrats’ proposed reform will only INCREASE future federal spending on health care. Furthermore, an independent analysis by the non-partisan Lewin Group found that 114 million Americans would lose their current health insurance.

Earlier this year I reintroduced the Health Care Freedom of Choice Act, a bill that would improve America’s flawed health care model by increasing patient choice, lowering costs and breaking down barriers that restrict access to care. Under current law, businesses are allowed to deduct the cost of employee health care from their taxes, while individuals and families who purchase health care cannot take the same deductions. This bias against individual choice leads to higher health care costs and reduces accessibility to care. My legislation would erase this bias and extend the same tax incentives to businesses and individuals alike. This would not only make health care more affordable for those who purchase it themselves, but by injecting choice and competition into the health care market it would lower prices for all Americans.

Republicans want to expand access to affordable health care and give families the freedom to choose the health care that fits their needs – without imposing a job-killing tax hike on small businesses and working families. From what we’ve seen from the Democrats – they want to take those choices away.

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