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CBO Releases Analysis for Senate Healthcare Bill

by Countable | 6.28.17

Updated 6/29/17: The CBO released its estimate for the Senate Republican proposal to repeal and replace Obamacare Monday, finding that it would reduce the federal deficit by $321 billion over the 2017-2026 period and increase the number of uninsured by 22 million in 2026 relative to current law. That’s in contrast to the 24 million uninsured and $119 billion in deficit reduction it estimated that the House-passed version of the American Health Care Act would provide.

The CBO is the independent agency that analyzes legislation for Congress. It has been criticized for the inaccuracy of its estimates in the past, such as when it overestimated enrollment in Obamacare exchanges by 18 percent. In today’s report, it acknowledged that its estimate should be viewed with the understanding that there’s a great deal of uncertainty surrounding how the federal government, states, insurers, employers, individuals, and healthcare providers respond to the changes in law.

Cost: The Better Care Reconciliation Act, as the Senate proposal is known, would reduce federal spending by $1.022 trillion and tax revenue by $701 billion over the 2017-2026 period, That’s $202 billion more than the net savings projected for the House-passed AHCA.

Health insurance coverage: In 2018, it’s estimated that 15 million more people would be uninsured relative to current law, primarily because the tax penalty for not having health insurance would be eliminated. By 2026, about 49 million people would be uninsured compared to the 28 million who would be expected to be without coverage if current law stays in effect. This is largely driven by proposed changes to Medicaid.

Health insurance premiums: The CBO estimates that this proposal, like the House-passed bill, would lead to premiums increasing until 2020 at which point they’d start to decline. Premiums would be 20 percent higher in 2018 and 10 percent higher in 2019 relative to current law, but in 2020 average premiums would be 30 percent lower compared to current law. The CBO attributes the decrease to fewer benefits being covered by benchmark health insurance plans and federal funds being provided to reduce premiums.

Medicaid: The CBO estimates that Medicaid spending would be 26 percent lower in 2026 than the current budget baseline, and by 2036 it would be about 35 percent lower. Under the current baseline, the CBO expects overall Medicaid spending to grow by 5.1 percent per year over the next 20 years. The Senate's bill would increase Medicaid spending at 1.9 percent per year until 2026, and about 3.5 percent in the year after that.

Tell your senators what you think of the GOP’s proposal to repeal and replace Obamacare using the Take Action button.

— Eric Revell

(Photo Credit: Gage Skidmore via Flickr / Creative Commons)

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  • Karen
    06/27/2017
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    So, in order to make America great, you need to endanger or kill 22 million people? You also need to give humongous tax breaks to the rich while screwing over women, children, the elderly, the middle class, and the poor? I cannot express just how disgusted I am by the greed and selfishness that is the soulless Republican Party. Each of you who votes for this bill, and those of you who had a hand in drafting this monstrosity (Toomey), will be personally responsible for signing the death certificates. You absolutely disgust me. You are not serving the people. You are serving yourselves and your rich friends who paid your way into office. Disgusting, selfish, irresponsible, evil. That is what this bill is, as well as all of the other destructive bills you have proposed and signed into law. Wake up, America, the Republicans don't care about you. They have set their sights on killing off you, your family, and friends. They want all of us to die.

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  • Jeannie
    06/27/2017
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    It's going to kill more Americans than the house bill! They could have gave us single payer and used OUR money for actual health care cost instead they will continue paying the insurance companies and kill all the people depending on medicaid, they have NO SHAME!!

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  • PLD
    06/27/2017
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    It's absolutely disgusting that a projected 22 million AMERICANS are to be sacrificed for tax cuts for the wealthy, money to build a military, a wall and other less humane concerns. Shame on the GOP leadership who pushed this closed door created proposal and anyone who supports it!

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  • Matthew
    06/27/2017
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    We all know this is a terrible, horrible Republican bill. It is nothing more than a tax break to the wealthy and a no coverage heath care plan. DO NOT BE FOOLED THAT PREMIUMS GO DOWN BECAUSE YOU WILL GET LESS COVERAGE UNDER THIS PLAN. Again, a horrible plan conceived by horrible people.

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  • Vanessa
    06/27/2017
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    Dear Mr. Hatch and Mr. Lee, do not ever call yourselves Christian or moral again. Taking away health insurance from 22 MILLION people and giving huge tax cuts to people that don't need it, does not constitute being either Christian or moral. Remember that thing about the money lenders in the Temple? Pretty sure that what you are all doing falls into that category.

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  • Dkrumfox
    06/26/2017
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    Please vote no on causing harm to large segments of the American population.

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  • Luis
    06/27/2017
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    According to Slate "Last Thursday, Senate Republicans released the key legislative language for the Better Care Reconciliation Act, their Obamacare repeal bill. Both the product and the rushed partisan process that produced BCRA are stupendously unpopular. It’s opposed by nearly every patient and provider group, including the AARP, the American Medical Association, the American Hospital Association, the Arc, the American Cancer Society’s action network. Key Republican governors condemn the bill, too. The bill cuts Medicaid deeply. It is so highly regressive that its tax giveaway to the 400 wealthiest households in America exceeds the total bill for Affordable Care Act premium tax credits in the 20 smallest states."

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  • David
    06/27/2017
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    Let me be clear. If you vote in favor of the current abysmal "healthcare" bills I will vote against you and I will do everything I can to make sure that others do the same. Your job is to protect The health and welfare of the people you serve. The current proposed bills are in direct opposition to that mandate, and for that matter completely devoid of basic human decency. They are not healthcare, they are wealth care.

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  • Carol
    06/27/2017
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    Please look outside your window and see that the majority does not approve of trump. Please remember the purpose of the ACA. The uninsured need health care too! Oppose trumpcare!!

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  • Missy
    06/27/2017
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    The only time my family had been able to have insurance is when the Affordable Care Act came to be. We are entrepreneurs and therefore never was able to have the luxury of having healthcare from our employer. This country was built on entrepreneurship. Don't make it harder for us to continue to build this country! Vote NO on this sham of a health care bill!! Support the people you have said you would represent not your politics. Heath care has no place on political sides. It's a human need.

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  • Mary jo
    06/27/2017
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    Vote No to this proposal that will leave the most vulnerable people unisured and left to die in the greatest county in America!

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  • Michele
    06/27/2017
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    The CBO score on the new Trumpcare bill is horrifying. You are turning the Senate into a death panel. Vote NO on this bill early & often.

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  • Nan
    06/27/2017
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    Vote no on the Senate Health care bill. I use that term loosely because it really doesn't provide affordable insurance or care for any chronic condition. VOTE NO

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  • Duwayne
    06/27/2017
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    I could get into all the salient details of how this bill could hurt millions of Americans but it's been done so my message is simple: stop this. You know this is wrong so just stop it. And if you don't stop it then never again claim to be moral, ethical, religious or pro-life. If you don't stop this bill you are simply a monster.

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  • Michelle
    06/27/2017
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    Please support legislators who vote NO on the Healthcare Bill. Obamacare may not be perfect but it is the only thing that has saved my husband and I - who are in our late 50's from devastating debt and homelessness. My husband is a victim of age discrimination in corporate america as are many of us in this age bracket. Too young to retire but considered too old to work.

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  • Raymond
    06/27/2017
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    I think any Republican who votes for this should lose their job in the next election!

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  • Jbev
    06/27/2017
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    This clandestine work to repeal the ACA is reprehensible. The republican senators should be ashamed of themselves. Improve the ACA and stop taking from the poorest of this country in order to further line the pockets of the wealthy

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  • Billie
    06/27/2017
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    I hope to hell that Dean Heller hangs tough and continues to reject this senate proposal and I thank Catherine Cortez-Maestro for fighting against this disgusting Republican excuse of a health care proposal that is nothing more than a proposed tax cut for the wealthy! I for one am watching what our Senators and Reps are doing and will reflect my opinion come 2018.

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  • Rick
    06/27/2017
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    I hope and pray this does not pass! I have a chronic medical condition.... and anything that is cutting benefits for 22 million with chronic medical conditions is unAmerican and totally barbaric !

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  • Leah
    06/27/2017
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    I am a resident of Morrison, Colorado, a registered voter, and I urge you to vote no on the healthcare bill. While it is predicted to lower insurance premiums eventually, it does so partly because deductibles are higher and insurance coverage is less. How can this be good for our country. Colorado depends on Medicaid to assist some of our poorest, sickest, and oldest citizens. Your responsibility is to your constituents in Colorado first and the GOP second. We do not want this bill. Fix the ACA by working with the Dems. Do not allow yourself to be threatened by Senator McConnel, the president or super PACs who stand to benefit most from this legislation. An unrealistic promise made 7 years ago is unrealistic still today after examining the details of a repeal. Don't do it! Thank you for your time

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