Wall St. Journal: “Chairman Max Baucus’s bill includes the so-called individual mandate, along with what he calls a $1,900 ‘excise tax’ if you don’t buy health insurance. (It had been as much as $3,800 but Democrats reduced the amount last week to minimize the political sticker shock.) And, lo, it turns out that if you don’t pay that tax, the IRS could punish you with a $25,000 fine or up to a year in jail, or both.”
Tom Barthold, the chief of staff of the Joint Committee on Taxation, confirmed the fine and possible jail time despite President Obama’s statement to ABC interviewer George Stephanopoulos two weeks ago that his health care plan does not contain any tax increases. After Stephanopoulos read the definition of “tax” from the dictionary, Obama said, “You can’t just make up that language and decide that that’s called a tax increase.”
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