Third Time’s A Charm: CBO Releases Report On GOP’s Third Health Care Attempt

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Robert Donachie Capitol Hill and Health Care Reporter
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The non-partisan Congressional Budget Office (CBO) unveiled its score of the Obamacare Repeal Reconciliation Act of 2017 on Wednesday afternoon.

The CBO projects that the number of uninsured Americans would increase by 17 million in 2018 if Congress chose to pass the amendment and eliminate much of the framework of Obamacare. That figure would increase to 27 million in 2020, as states would no longer be able to apply for Obamacare’s Medicaid expansion program, and the federal government stops paying out subsidies for people that obtain insurance coverage through the Obamacare state exchanges.

Enacting the legislation would cause the federal budget deficit to decrease by $473 billion from 2017 to 2026, the CBO reports. Essentially, repealing the portions of Obamacare included in the legislation would save the federal government roughly $473 billion over the next decade.

Passing the legislation would also see insurance premiums increase 25 percent more in 2018 than they are expected to rise under Obamacare. (RELATED: CBO Score: AHCA Could Actually Lower Premiums)

In its new estimation, the non-partisan agency expects that 50 percent of the nation’s population would live in an area that had no insurance provider participating in the non-group marketplace by 2020. Much of that loss would stem from the lack of enforcement mechanisms to incentivize individuals to have health insurance and the resulting increased pressure on premiums. Under the legislation, in 2026 some 75 percent of Americans would live in an area with no insurance provider participating on the Obamacare exchanges.

If Congress passed the legislation, the CBO does not anticipate that it would increase net direct spending after 2026 for the following 40 years.

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