Third and related, the legislation is not going to bust the budget. You’ve heard the refrain: “It costs a trillion dollars!” Three points: (a) Even if the official estimators in Congress are off by 10%, the revenue sources being proposed would cover the $871 billion to $1 trillion cost over 10 years; (b) that trillion dollar expense is cited out of context. We’ll spend as a nation a projected $35 trillion on health care from 2010 through 2019. One trillion adds 3% to that. And the non-partisan number crunchers at the federal Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services estimated last week that the legislation would actually increase national health spending over the next decade by just 0.6% because it reduces wasteful spending, mostly in Medicare.
And (c): 90% of the $1 trillion is allocated to expanding Medicaid and directly helping people buy private insurance. It’s not money for new bureaucracies and regulations, or to bail out businesses. It’s your tax dollars being used to help 30 million to 36 million Americans (and you could be one someday) get the security that health insurance provides.