The nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office estimated that the new health care law will save $143 billion in the first 10 years. And it will save as much as $1.3 trillion over the second 10 years.
In simplest terms Chris Smith and the Republicans want to
- Repeal Obamacare (PPACA) at a cost to the system of hundreds of billions of dollars. This suggests that Republicans are more interested in delivering a blow to President Obama than lowering the national debt.
- Eliminate Medicare as we know it and replace it with a voucher system which will likely cost seniors more money and result in less benefits. (Even Newt Gingrich called the Republican plan "too radical" and "right-wing social engineering".)
- Cut Medicaid by $770 million and turn it into a state block grant system which would endanger the most frail and needy seniors. This move is opposed by AARP.
- Eliminate the 40 year old Title X Act, the most successful health plan for low income women.
1) Repealing the Healthcare Reform law;
The nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office (CBO), the Joint Committee on Taxation (JCT), and the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) have estimated that the PPACA will, on net, reduce budget deficits over the 2012–2021 period and beyond and result in "a substantial overall reduction in the number of uninsured." The Spring 2012 Government Accounting Office's Long Term Fiscal Outlook Report says "if the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) is implemented as intended it would have a major (positive) effect on the (deficit) gap but would not eliminate it" (http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-12-521SP)
The CBO found that repealing the PPACA added $210 billion to the deficit. So the deficit would actually be lower if the law is not repealed.
The effect in the 4th District of repealing the Healthcare Reform law would be;
-Allowing insurance companies to deny coverage to 117,000 to 301,000 individuals, including 9,000 to 41,000 children, with pre-existing conditions.
-Rescinding consumer protections for 481,000 individuals who have health insurance through their employer or the market for private insurance.
-Eliminating health care tax credits for up to 16,400 small businesses and 121,000 families.
-Increasing prescription drug costs for 10,300 seniors who hit the Part D drug “donut hole” and denying new preventive care benefits to 118,000 seniors.
-Increasing the costs of early retiree coverage for up to 9,700 early retirees.
-Eliminating new health care coverage options for 2,300 uninsured young adults.
-Increasing the number of people without health insurance by 23,000 individuals.
-Increasing the costs to hospitals of providing uncompensated care by $27 million annually.
a) For a detailed analysis of the effect on the 4th District of Chris Smith's vote to repeal the Healthcare Reform Law see;
b) The PPACA plan is similar to the plan implemented in Massachusetts by Candidate Romney in 2006. For a comparison of the two plans see;
c) Republicans have criticized the Canadian healthcare program. But here is what the AARP has to say about it; see http://www.aarp.org/politics-society/government-elections/info-03-2012/test.html
d) FYI, a very good discussion of healthcare issues can be found at;
2) Eliminating Medicare;
The Republican plan to effectively eliminate Medicare contains few details of how the plan of private vouchers would work — except that the payments would be pegged to the rate of inflation which has been rising much slower than health care costs.
Per the AARP, "an analysis of the Ryan plan by the politically neutral Congressional Budget Office estimates that by 2030, typical 65-year-olds would pay 68 percent of the cost of their coverage out of pocket, compared with the 25 percent share they pay now. In dollar terms, the average 65-year-old's costs would more than double from about $6,000 a year under current law to $12,500 by 2022, and would be higher for older people."
See more AARP analysis at; http://www.aarp.org/about-aarp/press-center/info-04-2011/aarp_oppose_unbalanced_budget_proposal.html
For a discussion of Medicare history see; http://economix.blogs.nytimes.com/2008/12/12/why-does-us-health-care-cost-so-much-part-iv-a-primer-on-medicare/?scp=26&sq=medicare%20drug%20program%202008&st=cse
3) Medicaid Block Grants;
Here is what the Smith/Ryan/Republican Budget Plan says, existing programs "are failing to deliver on their promise to society's most vulnerable citizens."
And here is what the Smith/Ryan/Republican Budget Plan does, cuts $770 million from Medicaid for our society's most vulnerable citizens.
AARP says the Plan "fails to acknowledge that older adults and people with disabilities account for two-thirds of all Medicaid spending and have nowhere else to turn for coverage of these services."
4) Women's Health;
Chris Smith and the Republican Party intend to eliminate the 40 year old Title X women's health program. The program provides counseling and services to low income women that prevents unwanted pregnancies — and therefore reduces the number of abortions. According to Guttmacher Institute estimates, “contraceptive services provided at Title X-supported centers helped prevent 973,000 unintended pregnancies in 2008, which would likely have resulted in 432,600 unintended births and 406,200 abortions.”
When he was a Texas congressman in 1969 arguing for the creation of the Title X legislation, George H.W. Bush said “We need to take sensationalism out of this topic…If family planning is anything, it is a public health matter.” But that was a very different Republican Party!
Much of the controversy has revolved around Planned Parenthood activities. For a chart on what Planned Parenthood actually does see;
Below is a picture of the panel of experts that the Republican controlled congressional committee solicited for advice on women's healthcare;
Here is a light moment about the women's healthcare subject;
Paid for by Froelich for Congress Committee