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Chop, chop, chop: GOP Hit List

January 24, 2011

Anything to do with oversight, regulation, perceived socialized medicine, or interference with business is on the GOPs chopping block. This short list does not include Social Security or Medicare which are prime targets.

NPR reports: The Republican effort to repeal the health care law is going nowhere in the Democratic-controlled Senate, but that doesn’t mean that the GOP is backing down. House Republicans are already beginning work in committees to lop off and possibly replace some of the law’s individual provisions.

1. Reporting Business Payments on 1099 Forms
Businesses that make payments of $600 in a year for goods or services to a single provider must file a 1099 form to the Internal Revenue Service identifying the company or person receiving the payment.

2. Individual Mandate
What the law says: U.S. citizens and legal residents are required to have health insurance by 2014 or pay a penalty. A number of people are exempted from the mandate, including those for whom the coverage would cost more than 8 percent of their income, American Indians and those who have religious objections.

3. Independent Payment Advisory Board
Republicans see the board as another expansion of government over health care, and many House Democrats oppose an independent board exercising control over Medicare. Many powerful interests, including doctors, drug companies, hospitals and patients-rights groups have begun lobbying Congress to get rid of the provision. They say they’re worried the cuts will be draconian, disrupting the health care system.

4. Health Care Flexible Spending Accounts
Starting this year, people who put money into pre-tax flexible spending accounts (FSAs) can no longer use those funds to buy over-the-counter medications or health care products without a prescription. Starting in 2013, the maximum contributions to those accounts will be capped at $2,500 a year.

5. The CLASS Act
This insurance program would allow people to volunteer for a payroll deduction to help them finance long-term care in their own homes if they become disabled.

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