|(WASHINGTON, D.C.) – Eighth District Congressman Larry Bucshon, M.D. released the following statement regarding the Congressional Budget Office’s “score” of the American Health Care Act:
“The CBO confirmed that the reforms in the American Health Care Act will lower patients’ premiums, repair the insurance markets to increase choice, significantly reduce the deficit, provide tax relief to families, and implement real, substantial entitlement reform,” said Bucshon. “It’s never been our goal to pass a massive, 2,000-page bill. And unlike the ‘Washington-knows-best’ approach of Obamacare, our legislation does not force the American people to purchase bad insurance at a price they can’t afford. In fact, the American Health Care Act is the first of a three-step process, so we expected an incomplete report from the CBO today. Our comprehensive approach – the American Health Care Act, actions from the Trump Administration, and additional legislation in Congress – will undoubtedly provide access to quality, affordable health care for every American.”
According to the CBO, the projected increase in the number of uninsured is primarily attributed the repeal of Obamacare’s mandates:
“Most of that increase would stem from repealing the penalties associated with the individual mandate. Some of these people would choose not to have insurance because they chose to be covered by insurance under current law only to avoid paying the penalties…” (CBO; 3/13/2017)
As described by House Speaker Paul Ryan here, the legislation considered by the CBO is only one of three phases in the step-by-step process to repeal and replace Obamacare.
Phase 1: The American Health Care Act, which takes full advantage of the budget reconciliation process, which is a procedural move that requires only 51 votes in the Senate and is subject to specific rules and restrictions.
Phase 2: Administration actions, notably by HHS Secretary Price, to stabilize the health insurance market, increase choices, and lower costs. The Secretary is granted discretion in nearly 1,400 instances under current law.
Phase 3: Additional legislative policies, such as allowing individuals to purchase coverage across state lines, that by Senate rules cannot be included in a reconciliation bill.
Because the CBO only takes into account phase one, the predictions released today cannot possibly provide a full and complete picture.
Key Points: AHCA Lowers Premiums, Increases Choices (courtesy the Speaker’s office):
A new Congressional Budget Office (CBO) estimate confirms that the American Health Care Act will lower premiums and increase access to quality, affordable care.
The CBO’s estimate shows that the legislation advances the core goals of our plan to repeal and replace Obamacare:
This report does not take into account additional steps Congress and the Trump administration are taking that will further lower costs and increase choices for families.
We understand concerns about making sure people have access to coverage.
Obamacare has proven that government-mandated coverage does not equal access to care, and now the law is collapsing.
Congressman Larry Bucshon, M.D. is a physician and Republican member of the House Energy and Commerce Committee serving his third term representing Indiana’s 8th Congressional district. The 8th District of Indiana includes all or parts of Clay, Crawford, Daviess, Dubois, Gibson, Greene, Knox, Martin, Owen, Parke, Perry, Pike, Posey, Spencer, Sullivan, Vanderburgh, Vermillion, Vigo, and Warrick counties.