The Congressional Budget Office said Wednesday that the bipartisan proposal by Sens. Lamar Alexander (R-TN) and Patty Murray (D-WA) to stabilize the Obamacare markets would reduce the deficit by $3.8 billion over 10 years if enacted.
The bill would restore cost-sharing reduction payments to insurers that were cut by the Trump administration two weeks ago. It would also tweak various components of the 2010 Affordable Care Act, including rules related to state flexibility and Obamacare advertising.
Sens. Alexander and Murray released a joint statement highlighting the report’s conclusions while warning about the cost of failing to act: “This nonpartisan analysis shows that our bill provides savings and ensures that funding two years of cost-sharing payments will benefit taxpayers and low-income Americans, not insurance companies. CBO has also told us that if CSRs are not paid, premiums in 2018 will go up an average of 20%, the federal debt will increase by $194 billion over ten years, due to the extra cost of subsidies to pay the higher premiums, and up to 16 million Americans may live in counties where they are not able to buy any insurance in the individual market.”