Mar 6, 2017

The GOP's coverage loss problem may be bigger than we thought

AP file photo

Chris Jacobs, a well-known conservative health care analyst and former adviser to Bobby Jindal, writes in The Federalist that he's found out how bad the estimates were for the original House Republican Obamacare replacement draft. Citing sources close to the effort, he says the Congressional Budget Office warned congressional staffers that the original version could have caused 10-20 million people to lose employer health coverage. And the uninsured could have increased by as much as 15 million, he says — "nearly as much as repealing the law outright."

Why it matters: Republicans have moved on from that draft, and the bill that could be introduced as soon as today is likely to have substantial changes. But that's why it will be critical for House Republicans to have new estimates from the Congressional Budget Office before the health care committees vote on anything, Jacobs writes — and it's not clear that that will happen.

The bottom line: "Members who vote for a bill without knowing its full fiscal effects, yet will be held politically responsible for said effects, do so entirely at their own risk."

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