Oct. 30, 2007
Congress Expands Children’s Healthcare
WASHINGTON, D.C. — A bitterly divided Congress came together yesterday to agree to greatly expand a state children’s health insurance program (SCHIP), paying for it with a sharp $4 increase in the tobacco tax. Anti-smoking advocates hailed it as a victory against smoking, predicting that the increased tax would cut smoking by at least 30 percent. Children’s advocates said that an expanded SCHIP program would increase in size by 30 percent.
Oct. 30, 2010
Congress Raises Cigarette Tax Again
WASHINGTON, D.C. — Congress, facing election-year pressure, again raised the tobacco tax by a dollar to help pay for a children’s healthcare program that has proven more expensive than originally anticipated. While revenues have stagnated because fewer smokers can afford non-contraband cigarettes, the demand for the expanded SCHIP program has increased, as more middle-class parents look for ways to get their kids covered.
Oct. 20, 2012
Congress Seeks To Make Middle-Class Parents Happy
WASHINGTON, D.C. — Congress, facing angry parents who are not now eligible for the children’s health insurance program, voted to make the health insurance program open to all families with children under the age of 25. Complaints by budget hawks that the expanded health insurance program would bankrupt the country in the next 10 years were met with indifference. “We will just raise the tobacco tax again,” said one lawmaker in response.
Oct. 20, 2014
Congress Targets Happy Meals
WASHINGTON, D.C. — Congress, facing a budget shortfall in the children’s universal healthcare plan, voted to sharply raise the tax on McDonald’s Happy Meals. The so-called Happy Tax also includes increases in the price of beer, ice cream and anything else that could make a person happy. One lawmaker was overheard saying, “How can anyone afford to be happy when the government faces such a budget deficit? If you are happy and you know it, open your wallet. It is time to pay the man.”