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Wednesday, July 25, 2012

ATR: CBO's New Score Of Obamacare Shows $1 Trillion Net Tax Hike Over A Decade

By Susan Duclos

ATR highlights the latest Congressional Budget Office (CBO) estimates on Obamacare, finding that over the next decade, the health care law created by Democrats and signed by Barack Obama, has a net tax increase of $1 trillion.

The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) today came out with new scores for Obamacare.  The big statistic that caught our eye was that Obamacare is now officially a $1 trillion net tax increase.

The reason this number is bigger than in the past is because the gimmicks of that law are now running out.  Tax hikes were scheduled to start several years after the passage of the bill, creating many "zero" years on a ten-year score.  Well, it;'s been several years, so the window dressing chickens are coming home to roost.

In Table 2 of CBO's analysis of repealing Obamacare, they clearly point out how Obamacare is a net tax increase of $1 trillion (to the penny).   If one were to remove the rest of the "zero" years, the net number would be more like $1.1 trillion.

ATR has consistently cataloged all 20 new or higher taxes in the President's healthcare law.  Now CBO confirms what we have suspected all along--this is one of the largest tax hikes in U.S. history.  When fully phased-in, it should permanently raise net taxes by about two-thirds of a percent of GDP.
Heritage provides the main takeaways from the CBO latest report:

As a result of the Court’s decision, the outlook for the law has changed. Here are the main takeaways from the CBO’s latest report:
  • Obamacare will cost less… The new CBO scoring shows that the net cost of Obamacare will be $84 billion less over the next 10 years than predicted in its last analysis in March 2012. Spending on the Medicaid and the Children’s Health Insurance Program expansion will fall by $289 billion, while increased spending on the exchanges to cover some of those who will no longer qualify for Medicaid will cost $210 billion. The law will now add $1.17 trillion in new government spending over 10 years—paid for by massive tax hikes on all Americans and robbing money from the Medicare program.
  • …Because more people will be uninsured. Obamacare will cost less because it will insure fewer people. While the Medicaid expansion extended to all individuals below 138 percent of the federal poverty line, the exchange subsidies are only available to those earning between 100 percent and 400 percent of the federal poverty level, which means only a portion of would-be new Medicaid enrollees will qualify for subsidies. In 2022, this will add 3 million more to the number of Americans who will still be uninsured under Obamacare.
  • Obamacare falls far short of its promise for universal coverage. Since day one, it’s been clear that Obamacare will not achieve universal coverage, and every time CBO revisits the law, the numbers show just that. In March 2010, when the law passed, CBO predicted that there would be 22 million people still without insurance in 2019. In March 2012, the estimate increased to 27 million in 2022. Now, the number has once again increased—to 30 million. So Obamacare leaves just as many people uninsured as it covers.
  • Massive uncertainty underlies CBO’s estimate. According to CBO, “what states will be able to do and what they will decide to do are both highly uncertain. As a result…[the] estimates reflect an assessment of the probabilities of different outcomes…in the middle of the distribution of possible outcomes.” As CBO points out, states’ decisions to expand or not expand Medicaid hinge on a number of factors, including their budget outlooks. States that decide to expand would face “a large extra cost.”
Over the last two years, Obamacare has shown itself to be a law muddled with unintended consequences, unworkable provisions, and costly, ineffective new programs. Today’s report from CBO shows that Americans can expect this trend to continue, driving home once again that the health law will not achieve what it promised and needs to be repealed.


One in 10 U.S. Employers to Drop Health Coverage

More at Washington Times and American Thinker.