(Newsroom America) -- Some 6 million Americans, significantly more than first estimated, will be hit with a tax penalty for not buying insurance under provisions of President Obama's signature health reform law, a congressional report said Wednesday.
Most of those people are in the Middle Class, the report from the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office said.
The report and its findings come at an inconvenient time for the administration, which is locked in a tight reelection campaign against Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney, who is likely to portray the findings as another promise the administration has broken with the American people, The Associated Press reported.
The current CBO figures are 50 percent higher than a previous projection by the agency in 2010, shortly after the measure was signed into law by Obama.
The finding also appears to run counter to Obama's promise during his first campaign not to raise taxes on anyone making less than $200,000 a year or couples who make less than $250,000.
Moreover, AP reported, the CBO "found that nearly 80 percent of those who'll face the penalty would be making up to or less than five times the federal poverty level. Currently that would work out to $55,850 or less for an individual and $115,250 or less for a family of four."
The office said the average penalty in 2016 would be $1,200.
"The bad news and broken promises from Obamacare just keep piling up," Rep. Dave Camp, R-Mich., chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee, told AP. Camp and a number of other Republicans, including Romney, have said they want to repeal the law, much of which has already taken effect.
Beginning in 2014, nearly all legal residents in the U.S. will be required to carry health insurance, though there are some exceptions for financial hardships, religious objections and other circumstances.
Erin Shields Britt of the Health and Human Services Department took a defiant tone, telling the AP that those who will be affected by the tax should own up to what was described as their civil responsibilities.
"This (analysis) doesn't change the basic fact that the individual responsibility policy will only affect people who can afford health care but choose not to buy it," she said. "We're no longer going to subsidize the care of those who can afford to buy insurance but make a choice not to buy it."
Romney spokeswoman Andrea Saul said the new CBO figures are more evidence that Obamacare, as it is dubbed, is a "costly disaster."
"Even more of the middle-class families who President Obama promised would see no tax increase will in fact see a massive tax increase thanks to Obamacare," she said.
Romney believes insurance mandates should be left up to individual states.
© 2012 Newsroom America.