RUSH: Sean in Detroit. It says here you're 30. Is that right?
CALLER: That is correct, sir.
RUSH: Okay, great. Welcome to the program, Sean.
CALLER: Thank you for taking my call.
RUSH: You bet. How can I help?
CALLER: My wife and I have been married for three years. I met her on January 12th, of all days.
RUSH: No kidding?
CALLER: Well, I did. That's how I knew she was the one.
RUSH: How about that.
CALLER: She's had insurance all of her life through her family and everything, but I have not, and we've been talking about Obamacare, and many are telling me that I should follow the law, that you need insurance, that you're not gonna stay infallible forever and all of this other stuff. It's not that I don't want insurance; I do. But I have heard so much from you and so many other stories from so many other people, that the last thing I really want to do is sign up and give my name and financials and everything else to Obama -- and the insurance doesn't even work half the time for most people anyway. So I'm kind of in a stickler with the new due date coming up, about what exactly to do. To buy or not to buy?
RUSH: Well, let me see if I can help, 'cause I'm gonna tell you what's gonna happen to you and people like you and all of us. The IRS issued a press release statement the other day warning everybody that they are coming, and they listed Obamacare Health Care Tax Tips. They were warnings to the American people informing them that they must obtain qualifying health insurance, as defined by the federal government, or face a shared responsibility payment (i.e., a tax beginning when you file your return next year).
That "shared responsibility payment" refers to the Obamacare individual mandate tax. This is where you can choose to not buy insurance but instead pay a penalty. For a couple/three years, the penalty is gonna be less than the price of insurance. But after that, you're stuck no matter what you do. Now, I need you to hang in there. I gotta take a break. I need you to hang on because I'm gonna tell you what this really means. This is jackbooted thugs making themselves known to you now.
RUSH: Basically Sean, the IRS is letting everybody know that they're gonna be monitoring them, and the Obamacare law requires you to have insurance or pay a fine -- and if you don't buy insurance, you have been warned that they're gonna collect a tax on you via your tax return. They'll just take it out of your refund, if you get a refund. If you don't get a refund, right now there's no mechanism for them to take any money from you.
CALLER: Well, right.
RUSH: So you might want to plan your tax structure so you don't get a refund. But here are the details. "Four Tax Facts about the Health Care Law for Individuals," and the IRS says, "Your 2014 tax return..." That's this year, which means next April, April 2015 when you file. "Your 2014 tax return will ask if you had insurance coverage or qualified for an exemption. If not, you may owe a shared responsibility payment when you file in 2015," and here's the payment structure. Here's the size of your fine.
It is the greater of these two possibilities: "1% of your household income that is above the tax return filing threshold for your filing status, such as Married Filing Jointly or single," whatever, "or your family's flat dollar amount, which is $95 per adult and $47.50 per child, limited to a maximum of $285." So your fine will be the greater of 1% of your household income or $285. So if you make $10 million, for example, and you don't have health insurance, you will owe 1% of $10 million as your fine. If you earn $100,000 and don't have health, you'll owe 1% as a fine. So that's what you're facing, Sean.
CALLER: I haven't made more than $5,000 a year since I started working, so I sometimes don't even have to file federal returns because I'm not at that bracket. I think the number is $7,200 or something like that. So I don't even make enough money some years to even pay taxes because I just work and go to school.
RUSH: What about your wife?
CALLER: She stays home. I take care of her through a little bit of money that I make. She baby-sits sometimes and things like that, but she doesn't work.
RUSH: Wait a second. You guys don't make enough money to file a tax return?
CALLER: Correct. At least in the last couple of years, yes, because we go to school full time.
RUSH: Well, there's no way that you can afford insurance. You would qualify for a subsidy, for health insurance, more than likely. Meaning: You would qualify for your neighbors buying your policy for you.
CALLER: But I don't want to do that, so. That's the last thing I want to.
RUSH: You're gonna have to. The law says you're gonna have to. You're gonna have to go to HealthCare.gov or your state exchange, and you're gonna have to have insurance, and you have to go find out what it costs and whether you qualify for a subsidy, and at that point you make a decision to buy it or pay the fine -- and what the IRS is basically saying here is, "We don't care who you are. We are going to find you, and we're gonna assume you're guilty from the get-go."
CALLER: Guess I gotta go to HealthCare.gov. Maybe Medicaid will help me out; I don't know.
RUSH: Well... (sigh) If you really don't file a tax return, there is no way for the IRS to track you.
RUSH: So then you're left with... (sigh) You don't have health insurance right now?
RUSH: Okay. Well, what happens? What's your plan if you need medical treatment?
CALLER: (long sigh) I don't have one, I suppose, to be honest with you. If I fell on the steps and needed to go to the hospital tonight, then I guess I would go to the hospital tonight and that would be that.
RUSH: Okay, so, you're an ER baby. You would head right to the emergency room.
CALLER: Well, if I needed ER.
CALLER: If I fell down the steps and broke my leg or something like that, yes.
RUSH: That's what you're waiting for. If you get a cold, you're not going to the doctor.
RUSH: If you get the flu for a couple weeks, you're not going to. You're only gonna go to the doctor (i.e., the hospital) if you have an emergency, right?
RUSH: 'Cause you don't have insurance. You got no way to pay for it, so... If that's the case, if you're not accessing the health care system, and if you don't file a tax return, I don't know how they're gonna find you; I don't know how they're gonna track you.
CALLER: Well, I'm gonna be graduating next year. I'm gonna be a school teacher, probably elementary or middle school, and at that point I will be making enough.
RUSH: Oh, well, why didn't you say so?
CALLER: Well --
RUSH: So you are going to need it next year. It's April in 2015. It's this year, 2014, when you file next April, that all this goes into effect.
RUSH: So you are free and clear this year, if all you're gonna make is... Did you say $7200?
CALLER: Yes, probably less than that.
RUSH: Less than that.
CALLER: I only grossed like 5,000 or so last year, even a little bit less than that.
RUSH: You know, I have earned $7200 a year, but I don't remember if I had to file a tax return then or not. I really don't know. I'll admit to you that I don't know what the floor is whether you have to file a return or not.
CALLER: It's just, every time I try and go to Obamacare, I either accidentally go to the Two If By Tea site or RushLimbaugh.com, and I can't get off it, and I just read that and enjoy instead of having to go to that site for Obamacare.
RUSH: Well, I don't blame you. I'd much rather go to TwoIfByTea.com or RushLimbaugh.com than HealthCare.gov, too. I haven't gone to HealthCare.gov. I'm getting nowhere near it. I'm holding out as long as I can.
CALLER: That's what I think.
RUSH: I don't have health insurance now. I tell you what, I am ticked off that I have to have health insurance. (interruption) What? You think I'm giving away something? I've never hidden this fact. I am self-insured. I'm self-insured. (interruption) I am on a health care roll. I am on a policy. I just never use it. The staff is just nervous as they can be in there, thinking I have just made a target of myself. Do you think...?
What have I been for 25 years? (interruption) Well, nobody's gonna get away with not paying anything other than friends of Obama. This is like anything else. There are gonna be people that don't qualify for subsidies that get them. This is such a mess. But, look, his point is he doesn't want to do it. He doesn't want to go to HealthCare.gov. I mean, he didn't need to spend this much money. He doesn't want to mess with this.
But that's out the window now.
He doesn't have that freedom anymore.
He doesn't, and nor does anybody else.
The law of the land is you have to have Obamacare, and... (interruption) What about the low-information people? Right. I'm telling them, yes, the IRS is about collecting money and they don't know low-information from high-information people. You know, if Anastas Mikoyan, a low-information voter, files his tax return and doesn't have health insurance, he's gonna get fined. Damn straight. Obama's gonna make sure of it. It's a money- collection agency.
Damn straight. They're gonna fine everybody they... (interruption) It's gonna be too late. By the time they find out, Obama's long gone. That's why all this is being delayed. Snerdley's asking me what's the low-information Obama voter gonna do when he finds out he's being shafted. It's too late. That's why it's all being glade thorough three years. All this being delayed beyond 2015 and 2016. So it doesn't... All these Obama acolytes who think he's greatest thing since sliced bread, at some point they are gonna realize they've been screwed, but it's gonna be too late.
By design, there'll be nothing they can do about it.
RUSH: By the way, in this IRS press release, this warning that went out: "As confirmed by previous IRS testimony to the tax-writing House Committee on Ways and Means, 'taxpayers will file their tax returns reporting their health insurance coverage, and/or making a payment.'" You will report it. It is going to be on the form, 1040-EZ, 1040, whatever form. Screw you, it's gonna be there. You will report. You will file, and you will report your health insurance coverage -- and people mock you when you tell them that we are losing our freedoms.
Here's Kathy in McLean, Virginia. Hi. Glad you called. Great to have you on the program.
RUSH: Kathy, are you there?
CALLER: I will say even though I have not met you, I consider the next best thing to meeting you was to have met Mr. Snerdley last September in Washington. It was a thrill. Mr. Snerdley said that I could ask you a quick question before I get to my point.
CALLER: That question is: Are there going to be Rush Revere and Liberty plush toys and a companion board game?
RUSH: You never know.
RUSH: You never know.
CALLER: Keep me guessing.
RUSH: That's actually a longer answer than I want to spend time on here, but the ultimate answer is probably, yeah. But we gonna be very careful with parceling stuff like that out, if you stop and think about why. But, anyway, that's not why you called.
CALLER: It is not. No. I'm calling on the topic of bullying and shutting people up. You know, bullying is right out of the old "civility" playbook. It's just meant to shut people up, and long those lines: Today is the last day that people can comment on these proposed IRS regulations that are going to effectively silence 501(c)(4) groups which are largely the so-called Tea Party groups.
I know you've talked about the this before, Rush, but I just want people to be reminded that this is the last day for comments -- and now, I think, it's over 122,000, the last time I looked on the IRS website. There's a very good website that I have no affiliation with, but if people want to go there and read more about this issue, and they have a link right to the IRS comment page, would you like me to give that website?
CALLER: All right.
RUSH: No, go ahead.
CALLER: People can do their research on this.
RUSH: Go ahead. Go ahead. It's just that then everybody's gonna want to give websites, if I did, but go ahead, go ahead. Since we called you.
CALLER: I only want to give it in the interest of our republic.
RUSH: Yeah, go ahead, what is it?
CALLER: It is Protect C4, and it's the number 4, free speech dot-com.
CALLER: Yes, ProtectC4FreeSpeech.com. It's a very informative website about what this is all about. You know, for the first time the IRS is trying to classify as "political activity" things like holding candidate debates or distributing voter-education materials. Even mentioning the name of a candidate 30 days before a primary election or 60 days prior to a general election -- and if any group does this kind of thing, they could have their tax-exempt status revoked. It is outrageous. Rush, there was a FOIA, a Freedom of Information Act request filed last December with the Treasury department --
CALLER: -- asking if there'd been any communication with the White House or other groups in the writing of these IRS rules. By law, the government had to respond to that FOIA request within 30 days, which is in January -- and do you know when they responded in January, they said, "Oh, well. We can't have the documents available until April." So take that, America! This is just disgusting.
RUSH: Not surprising. Well, Kathy, it was great talking to you. Thanks very much.