THE PLANK NOVEMBER 19, 2009
Fox News All-Star panelist Charles Krauthammer says the Senate health care bill starts collecting revenue immediately, but runs an annual deficit, so that it will explode the deficit in the long run:
In the House bill, and I'm sure in the bill that we will hear about tomorrow in the Senate, it's ten years of people paying in, and six or seven years of health care [paying out] because [the benefits] kick in later.
So that is how you make the numbers look good. But annually it runs at a huge deficit.
In fact, this is completely false. The CBO budget score of the Senate bill can be found here, on page 3. In year ten, the Senate bill would reduce the deficit by $8 billion. CBO projects that the savings would grow after that:
All told, the legislation would reduce the federal deficit by $8 billion in 2019, CBO and
JCT estimate. In the decade after 2019, the gross cost of the coverage expansion would
probably exceed 1 percent of gross domestic product (GDP), but the added revenues and
cost savings would probably be greater. Consequently, CBO expects that the bill, if
enacted, would reduce federal budget deficits over the ensuing decade relative to those
projected under current law—with a total effect during that decade that is in a broad
range around one-quarter percent of GDP.
I'm sure after learning of his mistake, Krauthammer will isue a public correction and soften his deficit-based opposition to health care reform invent a new, possibly false, reason to oppose the bill.