Published June 22, 2009
Senator Max Baucus won't do this show, but I admire him just the same.
Not because he doesn't do the show — it certainly can't be personal. But because he spells out clearly how he plans to pay for health care — very personal. And for one out of eight of us, very expensive too.
Because that is how many American workers will be paying taxes on their health care benefits.
I guess you really have to get the money from somewhere, and for a health care package already pegged at a trillion bucks, you might as well get down to brass tacks.
And now, Senator Baucus has. And Senator Baucus matters. Not only because he's chairman of the Senate Finance Committee. But because he's the only politician on any committee anywhere in Washington telling you how he hopes to pay for all this. Baucus proposes a number of options to, and I quote here, "limit allowable tax free health benefits."
Right now, as my intrepid colleague Peter Barnes reports, he's targeting workers earning at least $100,000 and couples making $200,000. But wouldn't it be grand if it ended there? It likely will not. Since it raises barely $167 billion over ten years, it only gets you a sixth of the way there. But it's a start. And for Baucus, it's a plan.
The only guy I know not talking just pie in the sky, but providing down to earth numbers to pay for the pie and the sky.
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