ABC News’ John R. Parkinson reports:
Speaker of the House John Boehner dismissed a report by the Congressional Budget Office that found that repealing the health care law would increase the federal deficit and warned that the “best health care system in the world is going to go down the drain” if Congress fails to repeal the law.
Earlier Thursday, the Congressional Budget Office released a preliminary analysis that the repeal of the Health Care Reform law, including reduced spending on Medicare, would cost $145 billion through the end of the decade, and $230 billion by 2021.
But shortly after the CBO released its report, Boehner, Majority Leader Eric Cantor and House Republicans responded by releasing their own report examining the economic and fiscal consequences of the health care law on the economy and federal budget.
“I do not believe that repealing the job- killing health care law will increase the deficit,” Boehner, R-Ohio, said about the CBO’s findings. “CBO can only provide a score based on the assumptions that are given to them. And if you go back and look at the health care bill and the assumptions that were given to them, you see all of the double-counting that went on, you see the fact that the doc fix wasn’t even part of the bill.”
The Speaker’s office later ticked off a number of examples of how the Democratic leadership in the last Congress “rigged the CBO score on Obamacare” including ignoring $115 billion needed to implement the law, double-counting $521 billion in Social Security payroll taxes, CLASS Act premiums, and Medicare cuts and counting 10 years of revenues to offset six years of new spending.
“The evidence is overwhelming that this health care law, by raising taxes, imposing new mandates and increasing uncertainty, is already destroying jobs in our country. It will continue to destroy jobs in America unless we do something about it,” Boehner said. “The [GOP] report shows how the law is making it harder to end the job-killing spending binge that threatens our children’s future. And when you look at it dollar by dollar, you can tell that the numbers just don’t add up.”
The report also laid out the GOP’s case for taking action to repeal the law and “replace it with reforms that will lower costs and protect jobs.”
“With 10 percent unemployment and massive debt, the American people want us to focus on cutting spending and growing our economy. That’s what repealing the health care law is all about,” Boehner said. “I hope the House will act next week to repeal the job-killing health care law so we can get started on replacing it with commonsense reforms that will reduce the cost of health insurance in America.”
“We believe that to fix our economy we need to fix our Congress. A more open Congress will be forced to listen to the people and act on their priorities instead of Washington’s,” Boehner continued. “We’re going to make tough choices instead of avoiding them. That’s why we’re taking these first steps to repeal the job-killing health care law that was passed last year over the objections of the American people.”
Majority Leader Eric Cantor, R-Virginia, said that House Republicans head into the new Congress “with a clear determination to fix what’s wrong here in Washington” and said that the health care law is already “a significant impediment to job growth.
“We hope to be able to deliver results for the American people and get this economy going again so more people can get back to work,” Cantor said. “That’s why we are taking action and next week we’ll see a resolution to repeal the job-killing “Obamacare” bill — “Obamacare” law so that we can demonstrate we’re dead serious about cutting the disincentives in this town to job growth across this country, and begin to once again grow this economy so more people can get back to work.”
While there’s a decent chance that the Speaker Boehner has the votes in the House to repeal the health care reform law, the repeal is highly unlikely to pass in the Senate. Additionally, there does not appear to be the support in the House to override a potential presidential veto.
Still, Boehner said that the American people overwhelmingly oppose the law and it is the Congress’s responsibility to come through on campaign promises.
“We made a commitment to the American people. We’re listening to the American people,” Boehner said. “They want this bill repealed. And we are going to repeal it, and we’re going to do everything we can over the course of however long it takes to stop this, because it will ruin the best health care system in the world, it will bankrupt our nation and it will ruin our economy.”