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Republicans are heading into their next phase of health care — drafting the Senate bill — with a lot of skepticism about the Congressional Budget Office. Health and Human Services secretary Tom Price declared that CBO "was wrong when they analyzed Obamacare's effect on cost and coverage, and they are wrong again." Senate Majority Whip John Cornyn tweeted in response to a House Democrat who quoted CBO's warnings about the House bill: "Fake news."

Senate Republicans can't ignore CBO completely — they have to pay attention to the cost estimates to make sure they comply with budget rules. But they can decide how much to worry about CBO's most dire predictions about the House bill, like escalating premiums for people with pre-existing conditions and unraveling state markets.

Reality check: There's a lot of analysis out there, including from conservative experts, about how badly CBO missed the mark with its estimates of the original Affordable Care Act. So let's take a quick look at what they got right and what they got wrong.

  • Prediction: 32 million uninsured would gain coverage.
  • Reality: 20 million uninsured gained coverage.
  • Prediction: 23 million people would be enrolled in the ACA exchanges in 2017.
  • Reality: 12.2 million people are signed up for 2017.
  • Prediction: 17 million people would gain coverage through Medicaid and CHIP in 2016.
  • Reality: CBO nailed this one: 17 million gained coverage through Medicaid and CHIP in 2016.

The difference: Yes, CBO was off — but the big lesson is that the ACA "only" covered 20 million uninsured people. There were no warnings that the law would have catastrophic effects. This time, there are. So Republicans have to decide whether it's worth the risk to ignore those warnings.

Yes, but: You could argue that CBO should have issued a stronger warning about premiums with the original ACA. Its 2009 analysis only estimated that individual insurance premiums would be 10 to 13 percent higher in 2016 than they were under the old system. Instead, HHS found last week that average individual insurance premiums doubled between 2013 and 2017.

Go deeper

Schumer's m(aj)ority checklist

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer. Photo: Tasos Katopodis/Getty Images

Capitalizing on the Georgia runoffs, achieving a 50-50 Senate and launching an impeachment trial are weighty to-dos for getting Joe Biden's administration up and running on Day One.

What to watch: A blend of ceremonies, hearings and legal timelines will come into play on Tuesday and Wednesday so Chuck Schumer can actually claim the Senate majority and propel the new president's agenda.

The dark new reality in Congress

National Guard troops keep watch at security fencing. Photo: Kent Nishimura/Los Angeles Times via Getty Images

This is how bad things are for elected officials and others working in a post-insurrection Congress:

  • Rep. Norma Torres (D-Calif.) said she had a panic attack while grocery shopping back home.
  • Rep. Jim McGovern (D-Mass.) said police may also have to be at his constituent meetings.
  • Rep. Adam Kinzinger (R-Ill.) told a podcaster he brought a gun to his office on Capitol Hill on Jan. 6 because he anticipated trouble with the proceedings that day.
Off the Rails

Episode 3: Descent into madness ... Trump: "Sometimes you need a little crazy"

Photo illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios. Photos: Tom Williams/CQ-Roll Call, Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

Beginning on election night 2020 and continuing through his final days in office, Donald Trump unraveled and dragged America with him, to the point that his followers sacked the U.S. Capitol with two weeks left in his term. This Axios series takes you inside the collapse of a president.

Episode 3: The conspiracy goes too far. Trump's outside lawyers plot to seize voting machines and spin theories about communists, spies and computer software.

President Trump was sitting in the Oval Office one day in late November when a call came in from lawyer Sidney Powell. "Ugh, Sidney," he told the staff in the room before he picked up. "She's getting a little crazy, isn't she? She's really gotta tone it down. No one believes this stuff. It's just too much."