In our recent Liberty Update, CFIF sounded the alarm on Gigi Sohn, Joe Biden's dangerously extremist…
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Former U.S. Attorney General Agrees: "Hyperpartisan Gigi Sohn Doesn't Belong at the FCC"

In our recent Liberty Update, CFIF sounded the alarm on Gigi Sohn, Joe Biden's dangerously extremist nominee to the Federal Commission (FCC), noting that, "Ms. Sohn is simply too radical to be confirmed to the FCC at a time when Americans rely more than ever on a thriving internet service sector, and the Biden Administration has only itself to blame for its delay in nominating her."

In today's Wall Street Journal, former acting U.S. Attorney General Matthew Whitaker brilliantly echoes the growing consensus that Ms. Sohn is simply too radical in a commentary entitled "Hyperpartisan Gigi Sohn Doesn't Belong on the FCC":

In addition to her hyperpartisan social-media presence, Ms. Sohn has dubbed Fox News 'state-sponsored propaganda' and has urged the FCC to look into whether Sinclair…[more]

December 01, 2021 • 11:55 AM

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Beware: Obamacare Penalty Could Come Back Print
By Betsy McCaughey
Wednesday, December 27 2017
State lawmakers need to hear from the public that doubling down on Obamacare's coercion model is a mistake.

The federal tax cut signed into law last week eliminates the federal penalty for not having health insurance, starting in 2019. That's good news for those who've been buying Obamacare to avoid the penalty, and even better news for those who've actually been paying the penalty. But don't start celebrating yet. In New York, California, Maryland, Connecticut, New Jersey and other deep blue strongholds, the insurance industry and left-wing activists are agitating to enact state penalties to replace the soon-to-be defunct federal one.

Ouch! Six-and-a-half million filers paid the federal penalty last year, including approximately 400,000 right here in New York, and 60,000 in neighboring Connecticut. The penalty payers largely earned less than $50,000 a year. They paid the penalty because they found Obamacare unaffordable. But paying the penalty also hurt. It averaged $470. Getting rid of that penalty will be a sizable tax break for them.

But tell that to insurance companies already lobbying in Albany, Sacramento, Hartford and other capitols for a state penalty. They're looking out for their own interests. What could be sweeter than a law requiring consumers to buy their product or get whacked for not buying it? State lawmakers need to hear from the public that doubling down on Obamacare's coercion model is a mistake.

Paul Macielak, president of the New York Health Plan Associationlobbyists for insurersinsists "New York's individual market must be protected." What he means is that without a penalty, many healthy people will say "no" to Obamacare's high premiums and drop out of those plans. How about protecting the millions who finally will get relief from the Obamacare penalty?

If the choice is between propping up the current, coercive system or giving individuals freedom to choose, lawmakers should know the right answer. Don't kowtow to lobbyists and Obamacare activists. Listen to the public.

Some want less expensive plans with fewer bells and whistles. Women over 50 shouldn't be forced to pay for maternity coverage or breast pumps, and couples without kids shouldn't have to buy pediatric dental coverage. Forcing them to buy a standard health plan is like telling car buyers they have to settle for a four-door sedan, no more hatchbacks or convertibles. It presumes they're too stupid to choose for themselves.

Relatively healthy people want lower premiums, which have more than doubled in the individual market since the end of 2013.

Blame Obamacare's one-price-for-all rule for more than half those premium hikes. Obamacare plans charge the healthy the same premiums as people with pre-existing conditions, whose health care costs are 10 times as high. The healthy pay sky-high premiums and never meet their deductibles. Instead their premiums foot the bills for the very sick. A rip-off for most people.

As for protecting people with pre-existing conditions, that can be done by separately funding a high-risk pool for the sick out of general tax revenues. That will spread the burden broadly, instead of foisting it entirely on the small number of buyers stuck in the individual insurance market.

Last fall, the Trump administration relaxed federal health insurance regulations to allow consumers more options, including short-term plans that exclude many costly services, such as maternity care and inpatient drug rehab. They're not guaranteed renewable, but the upside is very low cost. The Obama administration had slammed the door shut on these plans, limiting them to 90 days in order to force people into Obamacare no matter how unaffordable. Trump lifted the 90-day rule. Now with the federal penalty gone for not having Obamacare, industry experts expect the demand for these more affordable plans to soar.

That is, unless state lawmakers put the kibosh on choice by imposing their own penalty. These lawmakers have to answer the fundamental question  Whose side are they on: The consuming public or the insurance companies?


Betsy McCaughey is a senior fellow at the London Center for Policy Research and a former lieutenant governor of New York State.
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"If you're still wondering why raising the cap on the State and Local Tax (SALT) deduction was important enough to Democrats to sacrifice their stated principles and resort to brazen gimmicks in order to fit it into the reconciliation bill, look no further than the latest release of the IRS's tax migration data, covering tax years 2018-2019.The data shows that certain states continue to alienate their…[more]
 
 
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