I find it both troubling and telling that Republicans have wasted no time in going back on their promise to cut the deficit by allowing the Budget Committee chairman to exempt from budget enforcement rules the deficit-growing effects of repealing the Affordable Care Act. In fact, Majority Leader Cantor himself acknowledges this blatant hypocrisy, believing that having "won" means not having to play by the rules.
According to the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office (CBO), the Republicans' legislation (H.R. 2) to repeal the Affordable Care Act would actually add $230 billion to the deficit through 2021 and billions more in the following decade.
Conversely, the CBO found that the Affordable Care Act cuts the deficit by $143 billion in the first 10 years (2010-2019) and by over $1 trillion in the second 10 years.
Furthermore, it extends Medicare's solvency by 12 years while combating fraud and investing new resources in proven efforts that will continue to return billions to the Medicare Trust Fund.
Finally, the Affordable Care Act is fully paid for. In fact, nearly two-thirds of the bill is paid for by reducing health care costs.
Given that Americans now spend nearly $2.5 trillion each year on health care, repealing the Affordable Care Act would actually increase the deficit and make health care coverage inaccessible and unaffordable for millions of Americans.
Once again, I must question my Republican colleagues' self-proclaimed commitment to fiscal responsibility and their motivations in permitting the consideration of legislation that would clearly increase the deficit rather than reduce it.