December 18, 2014

jgordon's blog

Newly Redesigned Washington Budget Report

This week, Concord debuts a redesigned version of our Washington Budget Report

Are We There Yet? (Reaction to CBO and the Upcoming Vote on Health Care Reform)

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It looks like we might be entering the final week(s) of (at least) this year's legislative push on health care reform.

Thursday brought us legislative text of the amendments to the Senate bill that the House will take up through the reconciliation process as well as an updated CBO score of the whole package. It is likely the House will vote on the bill package Sunday. If they do so, the Senate bill will become the law of the land, and the reconciliation amendments will then have to make it though the Senate before those become law.

Short-term support for the economy is not inconsistent with long-term fiscal responsibility

Perhaps the most difficult policy question Concord has been discussing with the public, the media, and members of Congress, is what to do about current large budget deficits given the lingering effect of a deep recession and projections for future debt levels due to population aging and rising health care costs. Does working on one problem preclude working on the other? The answer is no.

President's Budget Follow-Up

Following up on our press release about the President's Fiscal Year 2011 budget proposal, here are a few more thoughts:

Annual discretionary spending:

The Risk of Partial Health Care Reform: More Expenses, Fewer Cost Controls

As the White House and congressional leaders rethink health care reform after the Republican upset in the Massachusetts Senate race, there is a growing danger that Congress will jettison comprehensive health care reform altogether. Even worse, they might pass stripped-down measures that eliminate politically difficult cost-containment, while popular but costly provisions are kept.

"It isn't fiscally irresponsible to raise the debt limit..."

"It isn't fiscally irresponsible to raise the debt limit, I think it would be rather irresponsible not to raise the debt limit because we have already incurred the bill."

Concord looking to hire Research Assistant

The Concord Coalition is looking to hire a research assistant to help with the Washington Budget Report and other Concord policy work.

For the full position listing and application submission click here.

Summary Numbers for Health Care Reform Legislation

When we finished our issue brief on the health care reform "endgame" before the holidays, we had a difficult time trying to isolate the key 10-year costs and savings of different components of the legislation. Now that we have had a bit more time with the final House and Senate versions of the legislation and the CBO analyses, we wanted to present the following table:

The "End Game" on Health Care Reform

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With the House having passed its version of health care reform (H.R. 3962) and the Senate on the verge of passing its version (H.R. 3590), the outline of a final bill is beginning to take shape.

Medicare Commission: Redux

As mentioned in the last post, the Senate dramatically weakened the Independent Medicare Advisory Board in the health care legislation currently being debated.