By Pete Kasperowicz
Just hours after the Supreme Court upheld the requirement to buy healthcare insurance or face a penalty, 120 House Republicans proposed legislation to eliminate the mandate.
The bill's sponsor, Rep. Michael Turner (R-Ohio), called the mandate a tax, since that is how the court justified keeping it around. The Supreme Court said the government had no right to require the purchase of health insurance under the Commerce Clause, but said the mandate and its penalties could stand as a tax on people who choose not to buy health insurance.
"This tax will have tremendous consequences on individuals, working families, businesses and local governments," Turner said. "According to the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office, the individual mandate alone will result in $4 billion in increased taxes a year on Americans by 2017.
"While Ohio families are still struggling under this economy, the president aims to place additional tax burdens on them that they simply cannot meet," he added.
The Healthcare Tax Relief and Mandate Repeal Act,H.R. 6048, has 119 Republican co-sponsors.
Republicans spent much of the day saying that the court's ruling means the only way to get rid of the 2010 healthcare law now is to vote out Democrats and repeal the law. Republicans took to the floor Thursday evening to dispute the ruling, and pledge that they would continue working on repeal.
The House has scheduled a vote in early July to repeal the law.