Liberal Spin: CBO Says Obamacare to Cost Less


Last night, Rob posted on the new CBO report which concludes that Obamacare health care exchanges will substantially increase health insurance premiums for nearly everyone, despite Obama’s own dishonest claims to the contrary.

The New York Times article on the same CBO report had a predictably different spin, trumpeting the fact that the report also concludes that nearly 3 million fewer individuals are now expected to be covered and the overall cost to the taxpayers of Obamacare will be less than previously estimated.

WASHINGTON — The Congressional Budget Office said Tuesday that the Supreme Court decision on President Obama’s health care overhaul would probably lead to an increase in the number of uninsured and a modest reduction in the cost to the federal government, compared with estimates before the court ruling.

The court said, in effect, that a large expansion of Medicaid envisioned under the 2010 law was a state option, not a requirement.

As a result, the budget office said, it now predicts that six million fewer people will be insured by Medicaid, the federal-state program for low-income people. But half of them, it said, will probably gain private insurance coverage through health insurance exchanges to be established in all states.

On balance, the budget office said in a new report, “about 3 million more people will be uninsured’’ in 2022.

With the increase in the number of uninsured, the budget office lowered its estimate of costs to the federal government.

“The insurance coverage provisions of the Affordable Care Act will have a net cost of $1,168 billion over the 2012–2022 period — compared with $1,252 billion projected in March 2012 for that 11-year period — for a net reduction of $84 billion,’’ or about 7 percent, the budget office said.

The federal government will subsidize coverage for most people buying insurance through the exchanges, and the per-person cost to the federal government will be higher than if they were in Medicaid, the report said.

What the Times article tries to overlook is the FACT that the reason for the nominal cost savings is because a growing number of Republican governors have decided NOT to implement the exchanges and NOT to expand their states’ Medicaid programs, all as allowed by the recent Supreme Court ruling on Obamacare. Its because Chief Justice Roberts’ ruling makes the exchanges and Medicaid expansion optional to the states, and GOP state executives have chosen that route, that Obamacare is now projected to cost the federal taxpayers a little less than previously estimated.

Although as Rob points out, those with private healthcare insurance will see a substantial increase in their premiums.

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