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Letter to the editor: Health insurance tax needs to be delayed

Of all the political issues causing a ruckus across the country, one thing I know everyone is concerned about are rising health care costs. The Affordable Care Act may not have been as affordable as its name, but all the talk of “repeal and replace” only led to more bickering.

One thing I hope Washington can agree on is we need to lower the cost of insurance. We also must delay the HIT – the health insurance tax. This tax is part of Obamacare, but it was delayed through a bipartisan vote for all of 2017. However, the HIT is set to return in January 2018.

The HIT will cause premiums to jump for small business owners, individuals, seniors enrolled in Medicare Advantage and North Dakota’s Medicaid budget. Premiums will increase between $200 and $500 for individual and family coverage under the HIT – and that’s a blow we just can’t afford.

I am encouraging Sen. Heidi Heitkamp, Sen. John Hoeven and Rep. Kevin Cramer to do what’s best for the hundreds of thousands of North Dakota families and businesses, and delay the HIT once again. If they want to lead on health care or tax reform, delaying the HIT would be a good start.