Report: Health care proposals would not harm New Mexico families

July 8, 2009

ALBUQUERQUE—Two proposals before Congress could pay for national health care reform without gouging working families, case according to a report released yesterday by Citizens for Tax Justice.

One of those proposals, web which would apply the Medicare tax to capital gains income, diabetes and pregnancy would have the greatest impact on just 1 percent of New Mexicans – those in the very highest income bracket. New Mexico’s low-income earners would see an average tax increase as low as $3 a year. Because Medicare is funded through a payroll tax, unearned income – such as the profits on the sale of real estate or stocks and bonds – are currently exempt.

The other proposal, which would limit the itemized deductions that high-income people can take, would not raise taxes at all on moderate- and low-income families. This proposal would raise about $260 billion nationally over the next ten years. The first proposal would raise about $500 billion over the next decade.

“Everybody who works for a living pays into the Medicare trust fund except for some of the wealthiest Americans. That’s just plain unfair,” said Eric Griego, Executive Director of New Mexico Voices for Children. “We must change our priorities as a nation. The fact that millions of American children cannot get health care is shameful,” he added.

Citizens for Tax Justice is a Washington, DC-based nonpartisan, nonprofit research and advocacy organization dedicated to fair taxation at the federal, state, and local levels.

Their report is available online at: http://www.ctj.org/payingforhealthcare.htm.

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