The Skimm, March 14, 2017

THE STORY
Yesterday, the Congressional Budget Office released its diagnosis for the new GOP healthcare plan.

10 SECONDS. REMIND ME.
Last week, GOP leaders unwrapped a plan for repealing and replacing Obamacare. It would get rid of tax penalties for people who don’t get healthcare. It would help people pay for coverage with age and income-based tax credits. And it would pull back on funding for Medicaid – the program that helps cover low-income and disabled people.

WHAT IS THE CBO?
An independent group of numbers nerds that, among other things, calculate how much a bill would cost the federal government. Riveting stuff. Lawmakers typically wait for the CBO’s numbers before moving forward. Yesterday, the group came out with its report card for the new GOP healthcare plan.

AND…?
The CBO says it would save the federal government about $340 billion over the next decade. The CBO also says the number of people without insurance will go up by 24 million in that same time period. Including 14 million people who are expected to lose insurance next year. That’s mainly because people will opt not to get healthcare, since they won’t have to pay that tax penalty anymore. Meaning, insurance will be more expensive for a lot of others.

WHAT ARE PEOPLE SAYING?
Supporters of the bill say the CBO doesn’t always get its numbers right. The White House says the CBO ignored certain parts of the bill, and it “strenuously” disagrees with the group’s take. Dems say it proves the plan will let down millions of Americans.

theSKIMM
A lot of lawmakers have been waiting for this CBO report to decide whether to vote for this bill. Now that it’s out, expect the GOP to be playing more defense.