10:05 PM, May 13, 2015 • By WILLIAM KRISTOL
Assuming a Republican wins the presidency in 2016, his top domestic priority will be—and should be—to repeal and replace Obamacare. The health care overhaul is the cornerstone of President Obama’s project to transform America into a top-down administrative state. The effects of repealing Obamacare, and replacing it with a conservative reform that moves us away from government control even by comparison with the pre-Obamacare status quo, would be hugely consequential. The reverberations from its defeat would be felt across the American political landscape. Such a profound rejection and reversal of the progressive worldview and agenda would strengthen the resolve of conservatives, shake the confidence of liberals, and usher in further conservative victories. Needless to say, a failure to repeal and replace Obamacare despite a GOP presidential victory would have the opposite effect.
It's therefore heartening that House Budget Committee chair Tom Price has just introduced the strongest Obamacare alternative offered in Congress to date. Price, a medical doctor, has long been a leader in the Obamacare debate. His new proposal is based on the alternative to Obamacare advanced by the 2017 Project, headed by Jeffrey Anderson, which I chair.
Price’s legislation would offer simple, refundable, age-based tax credits to Americans who buy health insurance on their own. This would effectively fix the longstanding inequity in the tax code that has kept the individual market from competing with employer-based heath insurance. Since the World War II era, most Americans who buy insurance on their own have had to do so without a tax break, even as their neighbors with employer-based insurance get tax breaks. This unfairness affects millions of middle-class Americans. Obamacare didn’t solve it. Price’s bill would.
Like the 2017 Project’s alternative, Price’s legislation would more or less equalize the tax treatment of health insurance by offering tax credits to help people buy insurance of their choice, in the amounts of $1,200 for those under the age of 35, $2,100 for those between 35 and 50, and $3,000 for those 50 and over — plus $900 per child. It would encourage the use of health savings accounts by offering a one-time tax credit of $1,000 for opening or having an HSA. It would cap the employer-based tax break at $20,000 for a family plan and $8,000 for an individual plan. (Those with, say, a $24,000 family plan would still get the full tax break on the first $20,000.) And it would do so without changing the tax treatment of the typical American’s employer-based insurance.
Price’s legislation would encourage people to shop for value by letting anyone who buys insurance for less than the value of the tax credit deposit the savings into an HSA. It would provide commonsense protections for those with preexisting conditions. And it would repeal Obamacare — and every one of its coercive mandates.
The result would be a revitalized individual market in which prices would start to be revealed, people would start to control their own health care dollars, choices would increase, quality would rise, and costs would drop.
Price’s alternative would cut federal spending by something on the order of $1 trillion over a decade by comparison with Obamacare, and its outlays would likely be fully paid for even compared to the pre-Obamacare status quo. It would cut taxes by something on the order of $1 trillion over a decade compared to Obamacare, and it would likely provide a tax cut even compared to the pre-Obamacare status quo. Most importantly, it would undo Obamacare’s consolidation and centralization of power.
The bill isn’t perfect. Rather than providing direct tax credits to individuals and families — and thereby giving millions of middle-class Americans a tax cut — it would instead mostly channel the subsidies through insurance companies. But this could easily be fixed.
12:01 PM, Feb 2, 2015 • By MICHAEL WARREN
The White House has submitted its latest budget proposal to Congress, and the Republican chairs of the budget committees in both the Senate and the House are criticizing the plan for increasing spending and raising taxes. In a joint statement House budget chair Tom Price of Georgia and Senate budget chair Mike Enzi of Wyoming blasted President Obama's proposal:
1:20 PM, Jul 9, 2013 • By MICHAEL WARREN
The House of Representatives will take up a bill that would stop the Department of the Treasury, including the Internal Revenue Services, from implementing and enforcing the provisions of Obamacare. The bill, authored by Georgia Republican Tom Price and co-sponsored by 114 other House members, is just two pages long and claims its purpose is to "prohibit the Secretary of the Treasury from enforcing the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act and the Health Care and Education Reconciliation Act of 2010."
1:54 PM, May 10, 2013 • By MICHAEL WARREN
Tom Price, a Republican congressman from Georgia, will not run for the U.S. Senate next year. Price told the Marietta Daily Journal that his "assessment at this point is the House is the battleground for politics in this country right now" and he will seek sixth term for his metro Atlanta House seat.
4:05 PM, Mar 30, 2013 • By MICHAEL WARREN
Congressman Tom Price, a Republican, has said he will not announce a decision about running next year for the Senate in Georgia until May, but a pair of fundraising emails obtained by THE WEEKLY STANDARD indicate the GOP congressman may be leaning toward getting in the race. Here's an excerpt from Price's first email to donors, sent Thursday:
The first quarter FEC reporting deadline is fast approaching on March 31st! We are off to a strong start with fundraising this year, and we are extremely close to reaching our first quarter goal.
1:08 PM, Mar 21, 2013 • By MICHAEL WARREN
Republican Karen Handel, the former Georgia secretary of state, gubernatorial candidate, and vice president for the Susan G. Komen Foundation, is moving closer to running for the Senate next year to succeed Republican Saxby Chambliss. Georgia political blog Peach Pundit reports:
Previewing the coming GOP primary fight to succeed Saxby Chambliss.6:00 AM, Feb 18, 2013 • By MICHAEL WARREN
“I have some discomfort with all Republican primaries because they’re all family squabbles,” said Tom Price, the 58-year-old Republican House member from north of Atlanta. “My brother and I used to fight almost daily,” Price, the middle child among five brothers and sisters, said. “My mom’s only prayer was, ‘Don’t hurt each other.’”
10:28 AM, Jan 25, 2013 • By MICHAEL WARREN
Two-term Republican senator Saxby Chambliss of Georgia will reportedly retire at the end of 2014. Jim Galloway at the Atlanta Journal-Constitution has the details:
"You can't get a yes or no."3:59 PM, Dec 4, 2012 • By MICHAEL WARREN
House Republican Tom Price of Georgia refused to say whether he would challenge Senator Saxby Chambliss in the 2014 GOP primary. In a Tuesday afternoon appearance on CNN, Price was asked by host Brooke Baldwin if he would "mount a primary challenge" against Chambliss. He at first dodged the question.
"What we're trying to do right now is to solve the remarkable challenges that we have. Any discussion about 2014 is extremely premature," Price said.
12:21 PM, Nov 30, 2012 • By MICHAEL WARREN
Georgia-based blogger and radio host Erick Erickson will not be running for the U.S. Senate, Erickson writes at RedState.com:
In politics, self-awareness matters. It does. When I was a political consultant, I told my clients my first two rules. The first was to know when you were in the minority, even when you thought you were right. The second was to know yourself as others see you.
10:31 AM, Nov 28, 2012 • By MICHAEL WARREN
Erick Erickson, a conservative blogger, radio talk show host, and CNN contributor, may be considering a run for Senate in Georgia. On his radio show Tuesday, Erickson stated there are "a lot of people pledging a lot of money" for a primary challenge against incumbent Republican senator Saxby Chambliss.
9:20 AM, Nov 21, 2012 • By MICHAEL WARREN
Saxby Chambliss, the two-term senior senator from Georgia, could face a Republican primary challenge in 2014.
4:28 PM, Nov 14, 2012 • By MICHAEL WARREN
Washington Republican Cathy McMorris Rodgers was elected by the House Republican conference as its chair for the upcoming Congress, reports Jill Jackson of CBS News. McMorris Rodgers, who defeated Georgia congressman Tom Price for the position, will rank fourth in the House leadership. Price had significant support from House conservatives like Paul Ryan of Wisconsin and Jeb Hensarling of Texas, but McMorris Rodgers was understood to be the favorite of most of the Republican leadership team.
But Cathy McMorris Rodgers may have him beat.11:54 AM, Nov 13, 2012 • By MICHAEL WARREN
When it comes to finding a leadership role in the next Congress, Tom Price is running out of options. Price, a stalwart conservative House member from Georgia, is the outgoing Republican Policy Committee chairman, which ranked him fifth in the GOP House leadership.
11:58 PM, Sep 8, 2011 • By MICHAEL WARREN
As they filed out of the Capitol Thursday evening, a few Republican House members told THE WEEKLY STANDARD what they thought of President Obama's address to Congress on jobs: