“Of all the claims deployed in favor of ObamaCare, and there are many, the most preposterous is that a new open-ended entitlement will somehow reduce the budget deficit. Insure 32 million more people, and save money too! The even more remarkable spectacle is that Washington seems to be taking this claim seriously in advance of the House’s repeal vote next week. Some things in politics you just can’t make up.”

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The American voters, most of whom have been around long enough and who have grown skeptical enough about politicians’ math skills, understand this intuitively. They see the pile of debt, a huge new program and shout: ‘Stop!’ In electoral terms, ‘stop’ means 63 House and 6 Senate seats. That’s why the Democrats would be wise to junk the ‘covering millions more saves money!’ argument. It’s not working, and by repeating it they simply convince voters that they are out to lunch.”

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Even a liberal columnist and ObamaCare supporter doesn’t believe the law’s deficit projections. “But the costs of the new law are far more certain than the savings. Anyone who’s spent any time in Washington knows better than to assume that health-care reform will end up as a money saver. Democrats will, I suspect, have ample opportunities to accuse Republicans of hypocrisy on fiscal responsibility. This isn’t one of them. And there are stronger defenses of the new law than to claim that repeal would be a budget buster.”

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“Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich’s advocacy group American Solutions on Thursday launched a website to support congressional Republicans’ fight to defund and repeal the health care reform law. In an email to supporters, Gingrich described the new site, NoMoreObamaCare.com, as an ‘action center’ for citizens who want to get involved in promoting efforts to repeal President Obama’s signature domestic achievement.”

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“The health care reform law was signed 10 months ago, and what’s striking now is how vulnerable it looks. Several threats have emerged — some of them scarcely discussed before passage — that together or alone could seriously endanger the new system.”

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“When government controls so much of health spending, it can quash investments in innovation and interfere with the natural processes of scientific investigation by denying payment and therefore blocking access to its huge markets. Many investigations are better than one centralized government body in determining whether a product is efficacious. Governments too often make decisions in silos. Integrated private plans are more likely to see the overall benefit of paying for a costly drug to avert an even more expensive hospitalization.”

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“Regional variation in Medicare spending is not correlated with variation in non-Medicare spending, and variation in non-Medicare spending is associated with measures of disease burden and health status. The data indicate that something is deeply wrong not with the doctors or the patients but with Medicare’s payment system, service mix, and incentives.”

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“If Congress is really serious about reducing long-term deficits, the best path forward is to accept the CBO report for what it is and also set aside PAYGO in favor of real budget process reform. In the meantime, repealing Obamacare is the right step toward reducing the federal deficit and getting health care reform right.”

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“The current Medicaid program is arguably the worst health insurance plan in the country. It has expanded massively beyond the original intent in 1965 and is now one of the two or three largest budget items for nearly every state. In spite
of massive annual increases in spending, Medicaid chronically experiences budgetbreaking costs. Expanding Medicaid, as the new health care reform law requires,
will only compound these problems.”

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“The ACA essentially imposes price ceilings on Medicare payments to providers. These price controls will lead to fewer health care options and lower quality of care for the Medicare population. In contrast, the Rivlin/Ryan approach would affect both the demand and supply side of the health care market – patients would shop and providers would respond. Provision for low-income beneficiaries in the form of health spending accounts could be structured to keep pace with the new system. The more realistic cost savings resulting from the Rivlin/Ryan proposal could be accomplished without the unintended consequences of price ceilings.”

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