MSM Not Correcting 'McCain Will Tax Your Benefits' Claim by Obama Campaign
Sen. Barack Obama's campaign has put out three new ads in the last few days attacking Sen. John McCain's health care plan, two of which focus on the proposal of a tax credit.
The Obama campaign is telling viewers McCain will tax their health benefits. Sen. Joe Biden, Obama's running mate, told viewers of the October 2 debate the same thing. The mainstream media aren't correcting them.
The accusations are wrong. McCain is replacing one tax break with another - one that is much more generous and will be especially helpful to people who are uninsured.
Here's how McCain's plan works:
If you're insured through your employer: You already are getting a tax break - worth about $4,200 to the average American family. You don't see it because your health insurance - which is part of your compensation package - is tax-free.
McCain's tax credit of $5,000 for a family would replace this $4,200 break you're currently getting - and then some.
If you're uninsured or have individual insurance: You're NOT getting the same tax break as all those people insured through their jobs. McCain's credit would give you the same advantage they would have - even if you make too little to pay income tax. It's a "refundable" credit, meaning you get it anyway, even if you don't owe taxes.
The tax credit replaces a break 60 percent of workers are already getting - and gives new money to those without coverage to buy insurance. Even now, policies bought on the individual market cost about half as much as employer-based policies, so the $5,000 credit will go a long way toward helping them buy coverage.