From the beginning, President Barack Obama promised the American people his health plan would not add to our federal deficit in the long term. Just this past Saturday he again promised the country: “I will not sign on to any health plan that adds to our deficits over the next decade. And by helping improve quality and efficiency, the reforms we make will help bring our deficits under control in the long term.” Problem is the official, independent, nonpartisan scorekeepers for Congressional spending and revenue, the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) and Joint Committee on Taxation, keep releasing estimates showing that reality just does not match Obama’s rhetoric.
When the CBO first released their scoring of the House bill, we produced this chart explaining: “by waiting till year 4 of a 10 year forecast, the Democrats are gaming the Congressional Budget Office’s scoring system to hide the true cost of their bill from the American people.”
After the Joint Committee on Taxation released their revenue estimates on July 16th, the House Ways and Means Committee extrapolated the data beyond 2019 in this chart, writing: “As the graph below shows, if the Democrats’ health care spending continues at those rates, it could cause a massive spike in the federal deficit – reaching as high as $1.6 trillion over the next 20 years. ”
Finally, former U.S. National Economic Council director Keith Hennessey took a slightly different graphical approach, highlighting the budget-busting effects of the 3.6 point gap between the House bill’s 5.1% annual revenue growth rate and the 8.7% annual spending growth rate:
No matter which way you slice it, the conclusion is clear: not only does President Obama’s budget already show average deficits of $855 billion over the next decade. Not only does Obama’s budget double the publicly-held national debt by 2019. But his health care plan will add another massive entitlement that will further cripple our structural deficit for generations to come.