Timothy Noah bends over backwards to be fair about the House and Senate versions of health-care reform on the table, Health Reform Winners and Losers
I have reproduced the Tax Foundation’s chart above. It might easily be the handiwork of the White House press office. (Indeed, its findings jibe roughly with those of the labor-affiliated nonprofit Citizens for Tax Justice, which examined only the House health reform bill’s tax provisions.) In 2016, the first year the House health reform bill would go into effect, the measure would cause average net income to rise by $595 to $1,908 for families earning up to $141,000, with the maximum benefit going to those in the middle 20 percent of American incomes. Everybody’s a net gainer, on average, until you get to the 70th percentile.
Republican nit-pickers can (and probably will) point out that the Tax Foundation’s distribution chart puts President Obama in technical violation of his (ill-advised) campaign pledge not to raise taxes on anyone earning less than $250,000. Families earning between $141,000 and $181,000 would lose, on average, $34. Families earning between $181,000 and $252,000 would lose, on average, $358. That’s a pretty trivial hit for people in these income groups and a very small price to pay to make sure your health insurer won’t cancel your policy if you get diagnosed with lymphoma. Even families earning between $252,000 and $358,000 would lose a similarly trivial (for them) $581.
Noah doesn’t think that Congressional Republicans will or should whine too much about people hauling in over 350K a year chipping in what amounts to pocket change in terms of percentage of income. In a logical world any household currently making over 200k a year shouldn’t be complaining about anything. Sure if you’ve got eight kids that few bucks matter, but those families will pick up a few dollars in lowering inflation of health care costs and the possibility that a serious illness of one of the house income earners could be financially devastating for the entire family. That doesn’t mean that the circle jerk of Limbaugh-Beck- Newsmax and assorted other loons will not somehow cast savings for the middle-class as somehow evil. They thought Chicago getting the Olympics was evil. They think clean rivers and lakes are evil and preserving our natural heritage for future generations of Americans is evil. Millionaire spinmeisters have to do something besides snicker at the gullibility of their cult-like followers.