The numbers are starting to come in on the costs of Senator Kennedy’s health care reform bill. Morning Bell: Reality Begins Bursting Health Care Hype
Yesterday the non-partisan Congressional Budget Office (CBO) released a preliminary analysis of the Kennedy-Dodd health care plan, and the results were truly frightening. Assessing just Title I of the draft legislation, CBO estimated the plan would add $1 trillion to the federal deficit while only extending health insurance to a net 16 million more Americans. As scary as that is, what is even more disturbing is what costs the CBO did not estimate: “The proposal does not include a ‘public plan’ that would be offered in the exchanges, nor does it contain provisions that would require employers to offer health insurance benefits or impose a fee or tax on them if they did not offer insurance coverage to their workers.”PDF
Read the rest of the Heritage Foundation’s skewering of Obama’s lies about the plan’s effects at the link. They have a link to the Republican alternative, too.
A snapshot of the Congressional mindset, also courtesy of The Foundry, in remarks made by Senator Max Baucus to the director of the Budget Office,
Baucus told Director Elmendorf he has a moral duty to be “creative” so that CBO can deliver favorable budget estimates. That comment was improper and Chairman Baucus should “clarify” his position.
While the Senator almost certainly did not intend to leave the impression he was dictating to CBO, his remarks could be interpreted by some as suggesting the CBO cook the books to get the results necessary to pass legislation. To do so would not only kill health care reform, but it would destroy CBO’s reputation and usefulness. With Baucus’ words hanging in the air, to preserve the CBO’s effectiveness Director Elmendorf must now be doubly careful not to appear to lean toward those results Senator Baucus might find favorable.
There is no indication of fakery or slanting the results in the report the CBO issued, but this just adds to the poisonous atmosphere of thuggery, fierce partisanship and corruption that surrounds Washington more and more.