The health care section for the official website for Democratic House Leader Nancy Pelosi may need a little bit of an update.
The website still includes a posting from 2009 — when the House was in the middle of the intense debate over President Obama’s health care plan — that calls any effort to call the penalty on those who fail to buy health insurance a tax.
It was part of Pelosi’s “Daily Mythbuster” feature and it declared this:
“MYTH: Mandating health insurance coverage is like a new tax.”
Of course, the Supreme Court has now saved the health care law by declaring that the requirement to buy health insurance or pay a penalty is indeed a tax.
In an interview on NBC’s “Meet the Press,” Pelosi acknowledged that President Obama’s solicitor general defended the constitutionality of the health care law by arguing that the insurance mandate is permissible under the government’s power to tax — in other words, that the penalty is a tax.
But Pelosi is still not quite ready to call it a tax.
“It’s a penalty,” Pelosi said. “It’s a penalty that comes under the tax code.”