Bush Eyes a Shift on Insurance and Taxes

President Bush may be about to touch one of the true "third rails" of politics: the deductibility of employer-provided health insurance.

This weekend, the president announced he will propose in the State of the Union that all Americans be allowed to deduct the cost of health insurance premiums — something currently only available to those with employer-provided insurance and the self-employed.

But paying for that will require a huge offset, and the White House has hinted they may go after the taxes employees don't currently pay on health benefits they now receive. The last time anyone suggested the change was during the Clinton administration — and many Democrats and Republicans still have lingering scars from the attempt.

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