The White House said on Saturday that President Bush would veto a bipartisan plan to expand the Children’s Health Insurance Program, drafted over the last six months by senior members of the Senate Finance Committee. New York Times, July 15, 2007
The reasoning behind the threatened veto?
The new spending would be financed by an increase in the federal excise tax on tobacco products. The tax on cigarettes would rise to $1 a pack, from the current 39 cents.
Mr. Fratto, the White House spokesman, said, “Tax increases are neither necessary nor advisable to fund the program appropriately.”
“The proposal would dramatically expand the Children’s Health Insurance Program, adding nonpoor children to the program, and more than doubling the level of spending,” Mr. Fratto said. “This will have the effect of encouraging many to drop private coverage, to go on the government-subsidized program.”
In addition, Mr. Fratto said, the Senate plan does not include any of Mr. Bush’s proposals to change the tax treatment of health insurance, in an effort to make it more affordable for millions of Americans.
Ah yes, f*** the kids, but take care of your buddies in the tobacco and health industries. In the meantime, if the bill isn't passed by September 30th the exising program ends.
This while the Czar flushes $12 billion dollars a week down the drain in his history-making war against the evils of Iraq.
priorities my ass...