NCPA - National Center for Policy Analysis


July 9, 2007

The state budget approved by Wisconsin Senate Democrats includes an outrageously expensive mandate for universal health care coverage.  The socialized medicine proposal would totally eliminate and replace private insurers, would be funded by a payroll tax on workers and their employers, and would cover nearly every resident in Wisconsin, says state Sen. Mary Lazich, (R-New Berlin).

There are two very serious problems with this massive overhaul of the current health care system, says Sen. Lazich.  First and foremost is the exorbitant cost:

  • Senate Democrats admit the cost of their plan is $15.2 billion annually; during fiscal year 2006-07, Wisconsin's total General Fund taxes -- that is income, sales, corporate, excise and miscellaneous taxes -- totaled $12.5 billion.
  • Providing universal health care more than doubles some of Wisconsin's taxes, which are already some of the highest in the nation.
  • Clearly this would be the largest tax increase in the history of Wisconsin; the $15.2 billion annual price tag also is nearly two and a half times the $6.5 billion state income tax during 2006-07.

Making matters worse, and this is the second most troubling aspect of the plan, an un-elected, appointed authority will have the decision-making power to adjust benefits and the payroll tax, says Lazich.  The authority will not be an elected body and will control $15.2 billion in taxes, health care pricing and rationing.

Source: Mary Lazich, "Column: Universal health care expensive boondoggle," Tomah Journal, July 5, 2007.

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