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“YES” on H.R. 2576.
October 26, 2011
NTU urges all Representatives to vote “YES” on H.R. 2576. Introduced by Rep. Black (R-TN), this bipartisan bill would modify the definition of income for purposes of determining eligibility for certain Medicaid and Children’s Health Insurance Program applicants. The legislation would also revise qualifications surrounding subsidies for health insurance purchased through exchanges created under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA).
In establishing new criteria for these programs, PPACA stipulated an income measure that excluded non-taxable Social Security and pension benefits. Omitting these income sources has the potential to significantly understate a household’s financial resources and could lead to a dramatic and unintentional expansion of a subsidy meant for only the poorest of Americans. Estimates conducted by Richard Foster, Chief Actuary at the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services, reveal that a married couple earning $64,000 – well above 400 percent of the federal poverty level – could become eligible for Medicaid unless the PPACA provision is amended.
By counting the entire Social Security benefit as income, H.R. 2576 would ensure that health care subsidies are more carefully targeted to those in need, a move the Congressional Budget Office projects would reduce the deficit by $13 billion over 10 years. Although NTU continues to support efforts that would repeal PPACA in its entirety, H.R. 2576 is a bipartisan cost-saving measure which should be enacted right away.
Roll call votes on H.R. 2576 will be significantly weighted in our annual Rating of Congress, and a “YES” vote will be considered the pro-taxpayer position.
If you have any questions, please contact NTU Federal Government Affairs Manager Brandon Greife at (703) 683-5700