The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) has released its analysis of the House health care bill that seeks to replace the Affordable Care Act, and it isn’t pretty. The CBO, which gives nonpartisan feedback to lawmakers on matters budgetary and economic, confirmed what we already knew.
As AFSCME Pres. Lee Saunders put it, “The health care bill currently before Congress is getting worse, not better. The CBO score concludes that the American Health Care Act would cause 23 million people to lose their health coverage; and, on average, those with coverage would have skimpier benefits and higher out-of-pocket costs.”
Compared with an earlier version of the bill that went nowhere, this new version is “more draconian and would make the health care system more cruel and chaotic,” Saunders said.
The CBO score is worse than a failing grade. It not only shows that the House bill would be a nightmarish substitute for Obamacare, but also unmasks the proposal for what it really is – a scheme to lay the groundwork for future tax cuts for the rich at the expense of working people, senior citizens, low-income Americans, the disabled, and pretty much everyone else.
“If this bill became law, it would exact a devastating human cost and cause untold suffering,” Saunders warned. “In addition to throwing 23 million off the insurance rolls, it would strip protections for those with pre-existing conditions; re-impose annual and lifetime limits; and squeeze state budgets, leading to cuts in public services – all while gift-wrapping a tax giveaway for millionaires and big corporations.”
The House proposal would also make staggering cuts to Medicaid – more than $800 billion over 10 years.
“Half of all Medicaid recipients are children, and one in five Americans, including seniors, pregnant mothers, and people with disabilities, depend on this program for everything from immunizations to in-home and nursing home care,” Saunders said. “Any legislation that degrades the health care of our most vulnerable people in order to give more handouts to the wealthy fails the moral decency test.”