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Should Congress End the Tax Exclusion for Employer-Sponsored Health Insurance?

President at Paragon Health Institute
Brian Blase, Ph.D., is the President of Paragon Health Institute. Brian was Special Assistant to the President for Economic Policy at the White House’s National Economic Council (NEC) from 2017-2019, where he coordinated the development and execution of numerous health policies and advised the President, NEC director, and senior officials. After leaving the White House, Brian founded Blase Policy Strategies and serves as its CEO.

Michael Cannon

Amy Finkelstein

Jason Furman

Richard Hinz

Paragon President Brian Blase appeared alongside Michael Cannon, Amy Finkelstein, Jason Furman, and Richard Hinz during CATO’s live event “Should Congress End the Tax Exclusion for Employer-Sponsored Health Insurance?

From the live event description:

For longer than modern health insurance has existed—and nearly as long as there has been a federal income tax—the federal tax code has treated employee health benefits differently from cash compensation. Cash compensation is subject to income and payroll taxes. When employers instead pay workers with health insurance, that compensation avoids both types of tax.

Economists have argued for decades that Congress should limit or eliminate the tax exclusion for employer-sponsored health insurance. They argue that the exclusion distorts labor and health care markets, such as by increasing medical prices and health insurance premiums. Some say the exclusion is the single most harmful federal intervention in health care. Others say it is simply a tax cut that benefits workers by making health care coverage more accessible.

The event was also rebroadcast on C-SPAN.

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