From the White House press briefing today, Press Secretary Robert Gibbs responding to queries from ABC’s Jake Tapper:I challenge anyone to justify why union members should be treated differently than everybody else?
Q: If I can just follow up on a question I asked yesterday? Now that the details of the deal with the labor unions have been made public, why is it fair for individuals who have so-called Cadillac plans that have been negotiated through collective bargaining agreements to be exempt until 2018 from the proposed excise tax, whereas those who might be in the exact same situation but are not part of labor unions — even if they want to be and their company resisted, or many they’re in right-to-work states — why is it fair for one group to not get a tax and others to –
MR. GIBBS: I would say this. I’ve asked to see what numbers they can run. We’re talking about an exceedingly small number of people I think that the premise of your impact would impact.
Q: It’s a big tax, though, 40 percent.
MR. GIBBS: Well, it’s a 40 percent tax on the insurance company for the excess of their policy over the threshold, right? So the new threshold is at $24,000, right? So –
Q: But if it wasn’t a big deal, the labor unions wouldn’t have pushed so hard to be exempt from it until 2018.
Saturday, January 16, 2010
F. at 8:19 PM