The new GOP-passed tax bill addressed the individual mandate in the Affordable Care Act but a longtime critic of the law says it's still on the books.
"We applaud Congress for taking action to zero out the Affordable Care Act penalty for Americans who cannot afford private insurance or do not want public coverage," says Twila Brase, president and co-founder of Citizens' Council for Health Freedom.
Despite that praise from CCHF, says Brase, Americans need to understand that the individual mandate was technically "zeroed out" in the bill, not eliminated. That means Congress, in the future, could restore the penalty.
"The bill does not zero out the penalty until January 1, 2019," she advises, "so Americans are still on the hook for penalties for going without coverage in 2017 and 2018."
Brase, a registered nurse, has opposed ObamaCare since the bill was drafted in 2009 and has been a vocal critic of it ever since.
Meanwhile, longtime conservative activist Tom Pauken tells OneNewsNow the sweeping tax reform probably saved Republicans and their slim majority in the U.S. Senate.
"They were headed for a Senate minority for the Republicans until they passed this bill," he says. "And now there's a real chance that we can hold on to the Senate and maybe even add to our numbers."
Pauken praises the GOP for passing a tax bill that provides tax relief for middle-class families and dramatically cuts the corporate tax, which was the highest in the world, he points out.
Brase says she is grateful that Congress realized how bad the individual mandate and took action that frees Americans from being forced to buy an "expensive, unaffordable product" that they don't want.