The Campaign Spot

An Unfair Attack on GOP Candidates For Their Answer on S-CHIP

Ruth Marcus hits the Republican candidates for supporting President Bush’s veto of the S-CHIP expansion in yesterday’s debate.
Let me deploy the argument I wanted to on CNN, but didn’t get to for lack of time: Under the bill supported by Nancy Pelosi and most Democrats (and a few Republicans) eligibility for the program for households of four would likely include those making up to $83,000 in New York, $72,000 in New Jersey, and about $62,000 in the rest of the country. (Marcus makes the argument that Bush is wrong to imply the New York figure would apply to the entire country, but doesn’t mention that income level for the rest of the country. If it strengthened her argument, she would have mentioned it.)
The median household income in the United States is $48,201.
When a program designed to help poor children is suddenly expanded to include folks making 1.29 times the median household income, and in one state up to 1.72 times the median household income, it’s no longer about helping poor kids. It’s about creating a new popular middle-class entitlement under the cover of allegedly helping poor kids.

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