Proudly standing before a joint session of Congress in September 2009, President Barack Obama promised those gathered and the American people that his massive healthcare overhaul “will cost around $900 billion over 10 years.” Warning sirens went off as even the president knew that cheap accounting gimmicks were used to arrive at that number and only now is the real cost being discovered.
The original estimates of $940 billion were achieved by delaying the implementation of the poorly thought out plan until 2014. This allowed the administration to avoid disclosing the full cost of the measure during a standard 10 year reporting period.
As we get closer to the full implementation of the program, the true costs are starting to show on the books and the picture isn’t pretty.
The Congressional Budget Office’s latest estimate now pegs the cost of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) at “a gross cost to the federal government of $1,762 billion.” That is $1.762 trillion and reflects a 96% increase in what President Obama told the American people two and a half years ago.
Further, because the latest report only covers from 2012 to 2022, there are still two more years before the plan is actually implemented. As such, the real cost over the first 10 years of it will not be known for some time but there is little doubt it will increase even further.
The report also contains some other interesting nuggets.
One of the major selling points the president used was that, “If you like your health care plan, you can keep your health care plan.”
This has already been disproven many times over as many employers are expected to drop coverage of their employees. The CBO report shows this reality saying, “Fewer people are now expected to obtain health insurance coverage from their employer or in insurance exchanges.”
That’s right. An estimated 4 million fewer Americans will obtain health insurance through their employer. Instead they will use taxpayer subsidized options offered by Uncle Sam.
Obamacare was also promised to be ‘deficit neutral’ and not cause our government that is already awash in red ink to incur any further debt. This was also a lie as the CBO points out that through 2022 $1.252 trillion will be added to our deficit.
Readers of this likely don’t need a reminder but just in case, as of this writing, our national debt is at $15.5 trillion. That amounts to $49,499 for every single citizen of the United States – man, woman or child.