CBO Says House Health Reform Bill Would Cost $1.2 Trillion.
The New York Times (11/3, A20, Pear, Hulse) reports, “As the House moved toward climactic votes on legislation to remake the health care system, the Congressional Budget Office said Monday that middle-income families might be required to pay 15 percent to 18 percent of their income on insurance premiums and co-payments under the proposal.” According to the Democrats, the data is “evidence that the legislation would reduce premiums for many low- and middle-income families who currently lack affordable coverage.”
But Bloomberg News (11/3, Rowley) reports that the CBO said that “a version of the so- called public option backed by House Democrats would charge ‘somewhat higher’ premiums than the average private insurance policy offered on a government-sponsored exchange to be set up to sell coverage to small businesses and individuals.” This gives “economists skeptical about a U.S. government-run health-insurance plan…new evidence to support their argument that it won’t force private insurers to cut premiums,” according to Bloomberg.
The AP (11/3, Espo) adds that “numerous Democratic officials” and the CBO say that the “healthcare bill headed for a vote in the House this week costs $1.2 trillion or more over a decade.” House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) “has referred repeatedly to the bill’s net cost of $894 billion over a decade for coverage,” but a spokesman recently attributed the higher estimate to the current bill insuring “36 million more Americans.”
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