“The Democratic plan for closing the budget gap has always centered on raising taxes and rationing care. What most people don’t yet realize is just how far ObamaCare has already taken us down that road.”

“So mandates probably help explain part of the story. But government-subsidized coverage is likely a large factor too. Yet the response of those who authored the PPACA was not to change the way the government provides coverage. It was to expand the subsidization of generous coverage and, at the same, time, make it more difficult for insurers to weed out waste through activities like fraud prevention and utilization review. A decade from now, I suspect, The New York Times will be telling the same story.”

“During a hearing on Capitol Hill Thursday, the secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) admitted to double-counting in the Obamacare budget.”

“But of all the deceptive arguments and tactics ObamaCare’s apologists employed to jam their government takeover of health care through Congress, none was more egregious than the CLASS Act fraud.
CLASS — for Community Living Assistance Services and Supports Act — was one of the late Sen. Ted Kennedy’s pet projects. It was sold as a miraculous twofer: The new program would provide both a self-financing, voluntary, long-term-care insurance program for those needing continuous assistance with daily living, and it would reduce the deficit to boot! What’s not to like?”

“So the facts are in. Obamacare includes tremendous new levels of federal spending at a time when lawmakers are seeking ways to reduce the unaffordable size of government. It pays for new spending by increasing taxes on the American people, burdening individuals and businesses and putting further strain on the economy. And, as we explain further in recent research, a realistic scoring of Obamacare shows that it is certain to increase deficits.”

“Few have been discussing the fact that last year’s health care law will increase gross federal debt and thus accelerate the speed at which we will approach the statutory debt limit in the future. As elected officials wrestle with these two contentious issues (health care and the debt limit) it seems reasonable to set a minimum policy goal that last year’s health care law be modified so that it at least not worsen the statutory debt outlook.”

“What made people especially angry was that I argued that ObamaCare had made our fiscal problems worse–yes, even if its deficit-reduction measures all worked, a proposition of which I am deeply skeptical. That’s because ObamaCare used up all the most obvious and politically feasible cuts in Medicare–and when that proved insufficient, some that weren’t obvious or politically feasible, like requiring every small business owner in the land to issue 1099s to people they bought supplies from.”

“To consider what the expansion of Medicaid under ObamaCare might do to the states, take a look at Massachusetts and Tennessee. In 2006, Massachusetts overhauled its entire health-care system, including a significant expansion of Medicaid. This expansion is costing the state far more than expected. Gov. Deval Patrick approved a record-setting $9.6 billion to cover its share of Medicaid costs last July. It wasn’t enough. He’s already gone back to the legislature twice, adding almost $600 million in additional funds.”

“The Obama Administration’s healthcare proposals continue to rob Peter to pay Paul with dangerous
consequences for the America’s healthcare system. First, the President failed to address the Medicare
physician reimbursement problem with the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. Now the
President is proposing a two year doc fix that shifts care access problems from the elderly to the poor,
undermines drug innovation, and further relies on unproven cost savings that will likely just add to the
federal budget deficit.”

“Sebelius began her remarks by stating that taxpayer funds will not be used to bail out CLASS in the event of insolvency. But a taxpayer bailout is a real possibility for several reasons. First, premiums may be set lower than the actuarially correct amount. This is because there isn’t a useful model for actuaries to determine premiums, especially given the uncertainties of enrollee make-up. Second, within the law’s provisions, if benefits paid out are larger than anticipated, then either premiums will have to increase or benefits will have to be cut. This is a move that would be vigorously opposed by interested parties. Beneficiaries with a vested interest in preserving their CLASS payment will likely lobby vigorously to spread the pain through broad-based tax increases.”