Philip Klein of the Washington Examiner looks into Democratic presidential contender Elizabeth Warren’s unwillingness to discuss potential consequences of her tax policies.

Sen. Elizabeth Warren deservedly drew heat from several rivals over her stubborn refusal to acknowledge that implementing a $32 trillion plan to provide free health insurance to everybody would require increasing middle-class taxes. But since she keeps trying to make the same bad argument, it’s worth reviewing what’s so dishonest about it.

Warren, whenever she’s asked about whether middle-class taxes would go up, argues that costs would only go up for corporations and the wealthy, but “costs would go down for the middle class.”

Essentially, she’s trying to make the case that because middle-class Americans would be getting free healthcare, their costs would go down overall. But Sen. Bernie Sanders, who actually wrote the bill she’s endorsing, makes a similar argument about middle-class Americans being better off on net under his plan (without premiums, deductibles, or co-payments), but he acknowledges that the middle class would still pay more in taxes.

It’s one thing to argue that people are getting a better deal by sending money to the government in exchange for services. It’s another to refuse to acknowledge they are paying taxes. For instance, people may believe that paying property taxes and sending their kids to public school is a good deal on net. But they still think of property taxes as taxes and increases in property taxes as tax increases. They don’t say that they aren’t actually paying taxes, because otherwise they’d have to pay to educate their kids, or that property taxes didn’t go up because the percentage increase in tuition at a local private school was even higher.