Mulvaney: ‘I Don’t Believe the Facts Are Correct’ In CBO Report on OCare Replacement

On Tuesday’s broadcast of MSNBC’s “Morning Joe,” OMB Director Mick Mulvaney stated that the CBO is “really good at counting numbers,” but took issue with their report on the American Health Care Act, stating, “I don’t believe the facts are correct. … I’m saying that based upon a track record of the CBO being wrong before,” and “Not so sure they’re the best folks to do insurance stuff.”

Mulvaney said, “We’ve been very critical, in the past about their ability to count coverage numbers, insurance coverage numbers. I think, just three years ago, for example, it was back down, 2013, Obamacare was already around, and they did an estimate then of what Obamacare would look like this year. And the number that they estimated at that time, not 20 years, not — just three years ago, there would be 24 people — 24 million people on the exchanges. Today, it’s 11.5. They missed by 50 percent over a window of just a couple of years. It’s really, really hard to do this. We don’t even try to do this at the OMB, that’s how difficult it is. CBO, good at counting money, in and out, numbers, taxes, policies, and so forth. Not so sure they’re the best folks to do insurance stuff.”

He later added, “I don’t believe the facts are correct. I — and I believe — I’m not just saying that because it looks bad for my political position. I’m saying that based upon a track record of the CBO being wrong before, and we believe the CBO is wrong now. Let me give you specific examples why that is, and it’s not politics. Go read the report. You’ll find out that the CBO assumption, in order to get to the numbers they get to, assume that someone — let’s say you’re on Medicaid today, okay? The House bill passes tomorrow. The CBO assumes that you will go off Medicaid, okay? It’s a free program, but the CBO has assumed that as soon as the mandate is gone, that you will give up something free in exchange for nothing. That makes no sense, and I think that’s where we sort of start to say, look, the CBO, really good at counting numbers, maybe not that good at making decisions about coverage.”

Follow Ian Hanchett on Twitter @IanHanchett


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