CBO updates Obamacare price tag projections and it's a shocker

The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) and the Joint Committee on Taxation (JCT) have released updated projections on the cost of Obamacare over the next ten years and the savings start immediately.

The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) and the staff of the Joint Committee on Taxation (JCT) have updated their estimates of the budgetary effects of the provisions of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) that relate to health insurance coverage. The new estimates, which are included in CBO’s latest baseline projections, reflect CBO’s most recent economic forecast, account for administrative actions taken and regulations issued through March 2014, and incorporate new data and various modeling updates.1

Tillis's Obamacare witch hunt skewered

This Raleigh News & Observer editorial is pure stark truth about Thom Tillis's taxpayer-funded Obamacare bashing stunt.

The committee’s meeting was designed to showcase one side and one side only in the health care debate. Republicans have at every turn tried to make it harder for people in North Carolina to access the ACA’s benefits. They even turned down an expansion of Medicaid, the health insurance program for the poor and disabled, although the federal government would have paid the cost.

Trying to find political cover for the unwise decisions to throw hundreds of thousands of North Carolinians under the bus without healthcare insurance, Tillis is apparently worried that people are realizing that the ACA is a good thing.

Tillis's Obamacare witch hunt commences

Thom Tillis's panel to "examine the impact of the Affordable Care Act on North Carolina" has started.

It's packed with GOP right-wing nut jobs, and its clear intent is to bash Obamacare and by extension, President Obama and Senator Hagan. This is a blatant use of public money for Thom Tillis's senate campaign.

The first speaker? Dr. Chris Conover (the GOP says he's a Duke professor; he's also with the loony American Enterprise Institute.

He's telling horror stories about Obamacare costs and the right-wing nut jobs are lapping it up:

Running Against Obamacare May Not Be So Easy

This is from the Huffington Post:
"WASHINGTON -- The former chair of the New Hampshire Republican Party will save $1,000 a month in premiums for his family's health care package after signing up for a new policy through the Obamacare exchange.

But Fergus Cullen said the savings aren't enough to turn him into a supporter of the new health care law. He said he anticipates higher out-of-pocket costs with his new Anthem-administered plan, and he's frustrated by what he sees as a lack of information about coverage options. His old plan, which was pricey but covered what he needed, was cancelled by his insurer because it didn't meet Obamacare regulations.

"Fundamentally, the plan I wanted to buy is one that gives me catastrophic coverage for my family and lets me self-insure for everything else," Cullen said in a phone interview with The Huffington Post.

Burr stumping again for his ACA alternative

Senator Richard Burr (R-Land of Make Believe) is on the stump again flogging the dead horse of the ACA alternative proposed by he and some other Republican Senators and backed by the Koch stinktank machine.

Meanwhile, with all the actors and misleading stories used in ads to bash the Affordable Care Act, Mother Jones wonders if anyone is actually being harmed by the law.

Will any media outlet actually challenge Burr to produce a fully documented case of someone being harmed by the ACA that can stand up to scrutiny?

Can someone explain the thinking behind "open enrollment" periods?

This has bothered me for a long time: What's the rationale for having pre-established periods during which customers can buy health insurance? It's not just related to ACA. Annual enrollment deadlines have been with us forever, forcing a frenzy of decision-making that seems to make no sense.

What America needs is universal healthcare where "enrollment" is equal to being born. The rest of the bureaucracy is nothing but bullshit designed to enrich private companies, while adding no discernible value to society.

Medicaid expansion, 2015

If medicaid is expanded in NC it will be in 2015.

It will give the hospital industry time to gear up their lobbying arm and have an impact on NCGA. They will then be dealing with the winners of the 2014 state election and not those currently running to be re-elected and subject to right wing criticism on the issue.

Expansion the year before he is up for re-election will allow McCrory to claim he has 'fixed' the medicaid program here--perhaps by replacing Aldona Wos (A small sacrifice for a second term as governor.) He can then bask in the warmth of those happy with their new coverage. And receive campaign contributions from the hospital lobby. It will please moderate voters and allow McCrory to say he is truly the moderate he claimed he was during his first gubernatorial campaign, pulling their votes back in his direction for 2016.

More heat for Rucho's Nazi Tweet

It was either ignorance or deception, take your pick:

Last week, former U.S. Sen. Rick Santorum equated Obamacare with Apartheid. This week, state Sen. Bob Rucho joined others who have equated Obamacare to Nazism (among other evils). Their obvious purpose is to inflame an uninformed electorate to be against something using terms representing atrocities. While imperfect, complex and rolled out poorly, to equate something that is trying to help people gain access to healthcare insurance as akin to Apartheid and Nazism portrays ignorance or deception.

Not sure we need to pick. Ignorance and deception probably share equal credit for this effort to enflame, and Rucho's obstinacy in refusing to apologize is evidence he realizes he was guilty of both.

Chad Nance (Camel City Dispatch) calls out Bob Rucho

I love the smell of righteous indignation in the morning. And the afternoon too.

You’re a two-bit hustler that would sell snake-oil to his dying mother. A cheap carpet-bagger from New York with a greasy suit, Mafioso hair, and without a shred of common decency.

We get it Rucho. We are the kind of people you don’t notice or want to deal with on a daily basis. You like to spend your time with cynical politicians, cash money donors, and the kind of ideologues you’ve been able to con into believing your unmitigated crap. I grew up priming tobacco in the Summer sun and feeding cows and hogs in Stokes County. I’ve been around enough barns to know horse shit when I smell it.

GOP says Obamacare will cancel 80-100 million insurance plans. NOPE.

Figures used on Sunday talk show came from "Daily Caller interview with Christopher Conover, a research scholar at Duke University and an adjunct scholar at the American Enterprise Institute.
According to Conover, Rogers, if anything, understated his case: Conover says "at least" 129 million people will lose their coverage by the end of 2014."
How does Conover reach such a startling estimate? By redefining what it means to lose your coverage.

from the Washington Post Wonk Blog

(Local professor drops the ball, the headline should read. Looks like Duke's football team is better than its economics professor.)

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