Obamacare Costs Off, Honest Mistake

Truth can be a tricky thing.  Sometimes people say things that are just plain wrong.  If they did so unintentionally it is not fair to label them dishonest.

Perhaps the Obama Administration really believed that their health care monstrosity would cost $938 billion over ten years.  That is what they said in March 2008.  Two months later, they re-ran the numbers and added $115 billion to the ten year cost estimate.  No big deal, because they also said it would reduce the federal deficit by $143 billion.

This week they looked at the numbers again.  Oops, off again.  Now the ten-year estimate is $1.76 trillion.  Not quite double the original prediction, but Obamacare has not even really kicked in yet, so, you know, honest mistake and all.

No serious person thought the original estimate was accurate anyhow.  Except of course all those really smart people in the administration.  Besides, why would they be dishonest?

Before elected President, Mr. Obama promised that his health care initiative would be hashed out in the open.  “It’ll be on C-SPAN.  It will be streaming over the net,” he said.  Not dishonest, just wrong.  It happens.  Like the time candidate Obama said that his health care reforms would help Americans “see premiums fall by as much as 3,000 percent.”  Math was probably not his best subject.

Since it should not take a Harvard degree to figure that all that spending probably would not cut the deficit I suppose the President and his men were wrong about that $143 billion too.  But the President said his “plan will not add to our deficit,” and he seems like a pretty honest guy.   Somehow, with the new estimates Obamacare will add $453 billion to the deficit by 2018 – and things really jump after that.  Remember that the Obamacare deficit adds to the existing deficit, which grown $1 trillion in each of the years 2009, 2010, 2011, and 2012.

But, hey, this is health care we are talking about.  It is important – and unrelated to the new regulations that in three years have added $46 billion to the cost of doing business.  According to the Business Review that is five times more than the total Bush regulatory bill from an eight-year term.

Mistakes happen.  Clearly someone hacked the White House calculators.  Never mind the boring numbers, let’s stay focused on the noble humanitarian goal of universal health care.  The President himself avowed “the time has come for universal health care in America.”

Well, it is not exactly working out that way.  Obamacare will raise the percentage of Americans with health care by only seven percent, to 93 percent of all legal residents.

Of course there are those 1,700 plus waivers granted by the Administration to groups like non-political not-for-profits like SEIU and small businesses like McDonald’s.  Oh, and there are the four million Americans who are being dropped from their employer plans according to the CBO.  The President’s promise that everyone could keep their health care plan if they wanted was probably not meant for those people.  It is hard to imagine why they would want to keep their employer plan when they could get in line for the big shiny new government plan.

Maybe there was no intent to deceive, just scads of bad information.  Or maybe, Obama has tried to be perfectly honest about health care but is being undermined by the dishonest hack that sets up the teleprompter.

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6 thoughts on “Obamacare Costs Off, Honest Mistake

  1. Table 2. Second to last page.

    http://www.cbo.gov/sites/default/files/cbofiles/attachments/03-13-
    Coverage%20Estimates.pdf

    The gross cost of the health coverage provisions. Not the net, which makes some sketchy assumptions about new tax revenue, just the gross. That number, the 1.7 is what it will all cost total to 2022.

    Remember that CBO does 10 year estimates. When they reach out to 2024, that cost number will be significantly higher, probably closer to $2 trillion total for the programs in Obamacare.

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