In his speech on health care reform yesterday, the President gave another eloquent and well-presented set of remarks. Listening to the speech from an admittedly self-serving perspective, we did hear the President once again say those magic words that he would not raise taxes on the middle class through health reform.
He and his team have reiterated that campaign promise easily more than a half dozen times in the past six months or so. And that’s great. Yet, the prospect of raising taxes still seems to linger out there.
We just want to give a friendly reminder that a tax on soft drinks is a tax on the middle class. And it’s a tax on lower-income workers. It’s a discriminatory and highly regressive tax, as the Congressional Research Service pointed out in a study it conducted. And this discriminatory, regressive tax would be placed on hard-working individuals already struggling through a recession. Not good timing. Not that there’s ever a good time for a tax hike on families.
We encourage lawmakers to keep the President’s pledge and these facts in mind as they move forward with the admittedly difficult challenge of passing a meaningful health care reform package.