This is the kind of stupidity that always results when you put Democrats in power. Can you think of a more counterproductive way to fund a health care program than by relying on citizens to ruin their health?
Illinois’ Medicaid program faces a $2.7 billion shortage that its governor has promised to deal with. So how does Gov. Pat Quinn propose to close the fiscal gap for his biggest budget item and largest health program? By relying on the state’s smokers to keep puffing — and paying — away.
This is not the first time these Democrat morons have done this. Back in 2009, the Democrat-controlled Congress passed a SCHIP (State Children’s Health Insurance Program) bill whose budget included a tobacco tax.
Tobacco taxes are both immoral and ineffective. They are immoral because the burden of such taxes are always borne by by the poor. They are ineffective because they are inevitably undermined by black markets:
New York City hiked its cigarette tax by $1.42 per pack in 2002, a report by the city’s Independent Budget Office found that more than a quarter of the city’s smokers were avoiding the cigarette taxes … This is a nationwide problem.
When the price of tobacco is artificially inflated by taxes, some enterprising crook will always be willing to smuggle cigarettes into the high tax state after buying them in low tax states.
Estimates indicate that states lose an estimated $5 billion tax revenue to tobacco smuggling each year.
The Democrats, whether they are in Illinois or Washington, are unable to learn from the repeated failure of their idiotic policies. So, they continue to promote this immoral tax policy that doesn’t work.
Just another reason to give them the bum’s rush on the national and local level this November.
[ht Jazz Shaw]