The Fine Print of ObamaCare

Democrats are in a lather over the Obamacare tax penalties soon hitting their constituents. According to the fine print in the law, “ObamaCare’s individual mandate requires that most Americans obtain health insurance by 2014 or pay a tax penalty.” This penalty will be paid on federal income tax returns this coming April. Despite the fact that it’s the IRS collecting this penalty, let’s not call it a tax. Instead, to borrow a favorite Democrat phrase, “pay your fair share”, this penalty is called an “Individual Shared Responsibility Payment.”

Words like “sharing” and “responsibility” are typically reserved for rich, cigar-chomping fat cat Republicans, not Democrat constituents. Hence the outrage of several Congressional Democrats over their rhetorical chickens coming home to roost. Michigan’s Sander Levin, Washington’s Jim McDermott, and Lloyd Doggett of Texas, “Strongly urged the administration Monday to grant a special sign-up opportunity for uninsured taxpayers”, according to the AP.

It seems many Americans were distracted by the finale of Celebrity Apprentice or the Grammy Awards and missed the February 15 deadline to sign up for insurance, or else face the penalty. The penalty is $975 for a family of four, or 2 percent of household income, which is greater. Once the open enrollment period ends, no one can purchase an Obamacare plan until the next enrollment period toward the end of 2015.