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Just as President Barack Obama got his health care reform initiative started, a key point of controversy during his campaign against Sen. John McCain reared its ugly head–the notion that employer-paid coverage should no longer be tax-exempt. That’s bound to create a political backlash with voters, and it might prompt wider support for a single-payer system.

Stirring the pot was a March 12 story in The Washington Post, headlined: “Workers’ Health Benefits Eyed for Taxation.” While President Obama and Sen. McCain clashed during last fall’s presidential campaign on this touchy subject, Republicans are not the only ones raising the possibility of slaying this sacred cow.

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