In a post yesterday, I summarized and expanded on Simon Lazarus’s argument that Paul Ryan’s budget has not one, but two, individual mandates. That post was wrong.
Lazarus’s article mentioned that the Ryan budget replaced the tax break that employers get for health-care insurance with a refundable tax credit that was “little noticed by pundits or politicians.” This was in Ryan’s Roadmap, and so I figured it got snuck into the final legislative language and Lazarus had simply been eagle-eyed enough to noticed it. But that policy isn’t in the budget. Lazarus was assuming that the budget’s vague portion on tax reform had something like the specific tax policies from the Roadmap in mind. I don’t think that’s a reasonable assumption to make, and given that I hadn’t noticed the health-care tax credit in the budget before, I should’ve checked it out for myself. That leaves Ryan’s budget with one individual mandate-like policy, not two. Mea culpa.