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Office Hours

McMorris Rodgers introduces bill on health care mandate

Congresswoman Cathy McMorris Rodgers of Washington has introduced legislation that would prohibit the IRS from hiring new employees to enforce the individual health care mandate included in the 2010 health care law.

McMorris Rodgers, a Republican and vice chairwoman of the House Republican Conference, cited recent federal rulings finding that “the individual mandate is clearly unconstitutional, and the IRS – just like every government agency - has a duty to uphold the Constitution.”

“Our bill will protect the constitutional right of every American to decide what health care is best for themselves and their families, while also saving taxpayers about $10 billion by preventing yet another unnecessary increase in the number of government employees,”  she said in a press release today.


 

As part of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, taxpayers are required to purchase health care insurance by 2014 or face penalties of roughly $325 per individual that the IRS would collect.

The non-partisan Congressional Budget Office predicts the IRS will need roughly $10 billion over the next 10 years and nearly 17,000 new employees to meet its responsibilities under the law. HR 434 would prevent the IRS from using any funds to hire new employees to enforce the mandate.

This week, Judge Roger Vinson became the second federal judge to declare the individual mandate unconstitutional, and 27 states are challenging the constitutionality of the individual mandate in court.


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John Stucke John Stucke is a deputy city editor who helps build local news coverage and writes about health care, bankruptcy and rural affairs.

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