June 24, 2011

ObamaCare Pulse Check
Nancy Pelosi Said Dems Needed To Pass ObamaCare So We “Could Find Out What’s In It,” It Turns Out What’s In It Is Fiscal Calamity
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Before ObamaCare Passed, Rep. Nancy Pelosi Said: “We Have To Pass The Bill So That You Can Find Out What Is In It.” (Rep. Pelosi, Remarks To The National Association of Counties 2010 Legislative Conference, 3/9/10) THIS WEEK, THE CONGRESSIONAL BUDGET OFFICE SAID OBAMACARE IS CONTRIBUTING TO A “BLEAK” FISCAL OUTLOOK.
CBO Reported This Week That An “Explosion” In Spending Including ObamaCare Will Drive The National Debt Higher. “Over the long term, the CBO said, the debt will be driven by a projected explosion in spending linked entirely to Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid, as well as ‘insurance subsidies’ that are intended to help cover the uninsured under President Obama’s new health-care law.” (Rosalind S. Helderman & Lori
Montgomery, “Congressional Leaders Increase Pressure On Group Discussing Debt-Reduction Deal,” The Washington Post, 6/22/11)

The Nation’s Fiscal Outlook Is “Bleak” Thanks To Spiraling Health Care Spending Which Will “Gobble Up More And More Of The Country’s Resources.” “The United States will find little relief from its bleak long-term fiscal outlook so long as growing federal health care and retirement programs gobble up more and more of the country's resources, said a new economic report issued on Wednesday.” (Donna Smith & Richard
Cowan, “CBO Sees Government Benefits Swamping Economy,” Reuters, 6/22/11)

“One Challenge That Arises In Projecting Federal Outlays For Health Care Over The Long Term Is That The Recent Legislation Either Left In Place Or Put Into Effect A Number Of Procedures That May Be Difficult To Sustain Over A Long Period.” (Congressional Budget Office, “The Long-Term Budget Outlook,”
June 2010, page 35)

Future Spending On Health Care Programs Is Expected To Grow Up To 15 Percent Of GDP In 25 Years. “‘The aging of the population and the rising cost of health care would cause spending on the major mandatory health care programs and Social Security to grow from roughly 10 percent of GDP today to about 15 percent of GDP 25 years from now,’ CBO said in an annual report.” (Donna Smith & Richard Cowan, “CBO Sees Government
Benefits Swamping Economy,” Reuters, 6/22/11)

CBO: To Be Sustainable, Significant Reduction In Health Spending Is Required. “Putting the federal budget on a sustainable path would almost certainly require a significant reduction in the growth of federal health spending relative to current law (including this year’s health legislation).” (Douglas W. Elmendorf, “Health Costs
And The Federal Budget,” Congressional Budget Office, 5/26/10)

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OBAMACARE’S NEWLY DISCOVERED $450 BILLION “GLITCH”
In A “Twist … Discovered Only After The Complex Bill Was Signed” ObamaCare Will Allow Millions Of Middle Class People To Receive Free Medicaid. “President Barack Obama's health care law would let several million middle-class people get nearly free insurance meant for the poor, a twist government number crunchers say they discovered only after the complex bill was signed.” (Ricardo Alonso-Zaldivar, “Medicaid For
The Middle Class?” The Associated Press, 6/21/11)

Up To Three Million Middle-Class Americans Could Qualify For Medicaid Entitlement Intended Only For Those Below The Poverty Line. “Up to 3 million people could qualify for Medicaid in 2014 as a result of the anomaly. That's because, in a major change from today, most of their Social Security benefits would no longer be counted as income for determining eligibility.”(Ricardo Alonso-Zaldivar, “Medicaid For The Middle Class?” The Associated
Press, 6/21/11)

“It Might Be Compared To Allowing Middle-Class People To Qualify For Food Stamps.”
Alonso-Zaldivar, “Medicaid For The Middle Class?” The Associated Press, 6/21/11)

(Ricardo

The “Glitch” Could Cost Hundreds Of Billions Of Dollars. “If we do a back-of-the-envelope calculation, in which the average annual Medicaid expenditure per early retiree is $15,000 per year, the ten-year cost of this glitch could be as high as $450 billion.” (Avik Roy, “The 450 Billion Glitch: 3 Million Extra Middle-Class Americans Eligible For Medicaid
Benefits,” Forbes, 6/21/11)

Even Medicare’s Chief Actuary Says The Policy “Just Doesn’t Make Sense.” “Medicare chief actuary Richard Foster says the situation keeps him up at night. ‘I don’t generally comment on the pros or cons of policy, but that just doesn’t make sense,’ Foster said during a question-and-answer session at a recent professional society meeting.” (Ricardo Alonso-Zaldivar, “Medicaid For The Middle Class?” The Associated Press, 6/21/11) Medicare Chief Actuary Robert Foster Says The “Glitch” Received “No Attention At All.” “‘This is a situation that got no attention at all,’ added Foster. ‘And even now, as I raise the issue with various policymakers, people are not rushing to say … we need to do something about this.’” (Ricardo Alonso-Zaldivar,
“Medicaid For The Middle Class?” The Associated Press, 6/21/11)

IN THE MEANTIME, MEDICAL PROVIDERS WON’T EVEN PARTICIPATE IN WHAT WAS SUPPOSED TO BE THE “CROWN JEWEL OF COST-SAVINGS REFORM”
Medical Providers Have Called ObamaCare’s Plan For Accountable Care Organizations “So Complex It’s Unworkable.” “President Barack Obama's main idea for getting quality health care at less cost was in jeopardy Wednesday after key medical providers called his administration's initial blueprint so complex it's unworkable. Just over a month ago, the administration released long-awaited regulations for ‘accountable care organizations,’ networks of doctors and hospitals that would collaborate to keep Medicare patients healthier and share in the savings with taxpayers.” (Ricardo Alonso-Zaldivar, “Obama Plan For Health Care Quality Dealt A Setback,” The
Associated Press, 5/11/11)

“[I]n An Unusual Rebuke, An Umbrella Group Representing Premier Organizations Such As The Mayo Clinic Wrote The Administration Wednesday Saying That More Than 90 Percent Of Its Members Would Not Participate, Because The Rules As Written Are So Onerous It Would Be Nearly Impossible For Them To Succeed.” (Ricardo Alonso-Zaldivar, “Obama Plan For Health Care Quality Dealt A Setback,”
The Associated Press, 5/11/11)

“The Draft Rule Is So Awful That Even The Models For It Say They Won’t Participate.” “The Obama Administration is handing out waivers far and wide for its health-care bill, but behind the scenes the bureaucracy is grinding ahead writing new regulations. The latest example is the rule for Accountable Care Organizations that are supposed to be the crown jewel of cost-saving reform. One problem: The draft rule is
2 Paid for by the Republican National Committee. 310 First Street SE - Washington, D.C. 20003 - (202) 863-8500 - www.gop.com Not authorized by any candidate or candidate’s committee.

so awful that even the models for it say they won't participate.” (Editorial, “The Accountable Care Fiasco,” The Wall Street Journal,
6/20/11)

The Program Is “Overly Prescriptive, Operationally Burdensome, And The Incentives Are Too Difficult To Achieve To Make This Voluntary Program Attractive.” “The regulations are ‘overly prescriptive, operationally burdensome, and the incentives are too difficult to achieve to make this voluntary program attractive,’ the medical group association said in its letter. One of the major problems seems to be that medical groups have little experience in managing insurance risk, and the administration blueprint rapidly exposes them to potential financial losses.” (Ricardo Alonso-Zaldivar, “Obama Plan For Health Care Quality Dealt A
Setback,” The Associated Press, 5/11/11)

NO WONDER AMERICANS ARE SO PESSIMISTIC ABOUT HEALTH CARE SYSTEM
Americans Are Pessimistic About Health Care System. “Americans are deeply pessimistic about the country's health care system, according to a report released Tuesday by Deloitte. The survey found negative attitudes at nearly every level. For example, despite lawmakers' frequent claims that the U.S. has the best health care system in the world, only 24 percent of Americans view it as even among the world's best systems.” (Sam Baker, “Report Finds Little Faith In U.S. Health Care System,” The Hill’s “Healthwatch Blog,” 6/21/11) “Only 22 Percent Gave The System An "A" Or "B" Grade, Compared With 36 Percent Who Graded It With A "D" Or "F." Roughly A Third Believe The System Is Worse Now Than It Was Five Years Ago. A Majority Believes That Most Health Care Spending Is Wasted.” (Sam Baker, “Report Finds Little Faith In U.S. Health Care
System,” The Hill’s “Healthwatch Blog,” 6/21/11)

3 Paid for by the Republican National Committee. 310 First Street SE - Washington, D.C. 20003 - (202) 863-8500 - www.gop.com Not authorized by any candidate or candidate’s committee.

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