Republican Healthcare Repeal Would Cost Taxpayers $230 Billion

If the Republicans who now control the House of Representatives succeed in repealing the Affordable Care Act – and it’s likely that the Senate will quickly squelch that effort — their action has the potential to increase the federal deficit by $230 billion, according to the non-partisan Congressional Budget Office (CBO).  The CBO’s analysis says that repeal of President Barack Obama’s signature legislative victory also will leave 32 million Americans without healthcare coverage.  While some health insurance premiums would be less costly, the CBO analysts estimates that if the law is repealed, consumers will have less coverage and will end up paying more if they lose the subsidies that the new law mandates.

Republicans — who are trying to characterize themselves as the party of fiscal responsibility – quickly dismissed the CBO’s analysis as unrealistic.  Speaker of the House John Boehner (R-OH), said “CBO is entitled to their opinion.  I do not believe that repealing the job-killing healthcare law will increase the deficit.”

Although the repeal may survive a vote in the Republican-controlled House, It is unlikely to make any headway in the Senate.  Even conservative Democratic Senators like Ben Nelson (D-NE) oppose repeal.  Assistant Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) said “The majority of the Senate still believes in healthcare reform.  We also believe that the only perfect bill ever enacted was carried down the mountain by Senator Moses.  Every other effort has needed some visitation, reconsideration, and this will too.”

Republican members of the House Rules Committee said a resounding “no” to attempts by Democrats to amend the repeal resolution to protect parts of the law, such as expanding access to mammograms for women and putting new restrictions on insurance companies.  Democrats reacted derisively, noting “You’re saying, ‘Let’s repeal this bill.  We don’t have a replacement.  Trust us,’” said Representative Jim McGovern (D-MA).  “So much for the open process.  There is none.”

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