Boustany Urges Spending Cut to IRS Budget, Preventing Enforcement of Individual Insurance Mandate

June 28, 2010

Washington, D.C. – U.S. Representative Charles W. Boustany, Jr., (R-Southwest Louisiana), Ranking Member of the House Ways and Means Oversight Subcommittee, urged his colleagues to vote to prevent IRS enforcement of the individual insurance mandate in the new health care law, saving taxpayers five to ten billion dollars.

Today’s House vote to cut IRS spending won this week’s YouCut contest, which allows the American people to have a say in what Congress addresses. Each week, various proposals to cut spending can be voted on, and the winning proposal receives a vote on the House floor. So far, almost one million votes have been cast to cut federal spending. For more about the program or to vote, visit http://republicanwhip.house.gov/YouCut/.

Boustany made the following remarks on the House floor regarding the individual insurance mandate:

“American families continue to struggle with rising health care costs.

“Recently, the Congressional Budget Office and the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services reported health costs for families and for seniors will rise even higher due to the massive, new health law. Today’s YouCut vote helps to stop one of the major problems with the new health law, and it could save taxpayers across the country between five and ten billion dollars.

“Under the new health law, the IRS will be in charge of verifying that every American taxpayer has obtained acceptable health coverage for every month of the year. If the IRS determines that a taxpayer lacks acceptable insurance for even a single month, then the IRS would have the power to withhold tax refunds. This is an unprecedented new role for the IRS – one that injects the IRS even farther into the personal lives of American families.

“So, today’s YouCut vote would prevent the IRS from hiring thousands of examiners and auditors required to implement the new mandate.

“As a former heart surgeon, I know we can agree on many commonsense proposals to lower health care costs. But, an individual mandate enforced by the IRS is not one of them.

“I urge my colleagues on both sides of the aisle to join me and cut five to ten billion dollars from the IRS while preventing yet another mandate on health care from the federal government.”

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