That's 2 million more than a previous estimate found, or a 50 percent increase. The average penalty will be nearly $1,200.
Starting in 2014, the new health care law requires virtually every legal resident of the U.S. to carry health insurance, or face a tax penalty. The Supreme Court upheld Obama's law as constitutional after finding that the penalty fell within the power of Congress to impose taxes.
The nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office said Wednesday the penalty will raise $6.9 billion when fully in effect in 2016.
"After accounting for those who will not be subject to the penalty tax, CBO and JCT now estimate that about 6 million people will pay a penalty because they are uninsured in 2016 (a figure that includes uninsured dependents who have the penalty paid on their behalf) and that total collections will be about $7 billion in 2016 and average about $8 billion per year over the 2017–2022 period. Those estimates differ from projections that CBO and JCT made in April 2010: About two million more uninsured people are now projected to pay the penalty each year, and collections are now expected to be about $3 billion more per year."
April 2010 is an important date to remember because it is about the time the so-called Affordable Care Act, i.e., Obamacare, was jammed through Congress. Now, it seems to be anything but affordable. It needs reconstructive surgery--soon.
Don C. Brunell, President (DonB@awb.org)