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Nonpartisan Budget Expert: Rising Health Care Costs Continue to Pressure Federal Budget

According to Speaker Pelosi’s office, ObamaCare will ensure all Americans “have access to quality, affordable health care and significantly reduce long-term health care costs.” One has to ask how the Speaker’s office came to that conclusion, because according to a recent presentation by the director of the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office, ObamaCare does very little to reduce the pressure rising health care costs are placing on the federal budget.

Rising health costs will put tremendous pressure on the federal budget during the next few decades and beyond. In CBO’s judgment, the health legislation enacted earlier this year does not substantially diminish that pressure. … 

“We have emphasized that the legislation maintains and puts into effect a number of policies that might be difficult to sustain over a long period of time. …  

“Putting the federal budget on a sustainable path would almost certainly require a significant reduction in the growth of federal health spending relative to current law (including this year’s health legislation).” 

(Douglas W. Elmendorf, Director, “Presentation to the Institute of Medicine, Health Costs and the Federal Budget,” Congressional Budget Office, 5/26/2010) 

Director Elmendorf’s assessment follows a report issued in April by the Obama administration, which estimated national health care spending will increase by $311 billion over the next ten years thanks to ObamaCare. But the American people knew all along a government takeover of health care would lead to higher health care costs and deeper federal deficits. 

House Republicans stand for real reform that lowers health care costs for families and small businesses and reduces deficit spending for American taxpayers. Yesterday, House Republican leaders introduced the “Reform Americans Can Afford Act,” legislation that will repeal ObamaCare and replace it with commonsense reforms to expand access to affordable health care for all Americans.