Today, Margot Sanger-Katz pointed out in the New York Times that the health care bill that unhappy odd couple Paul Ryan and Donald Trump came up with would actually cause more people to lose their insurance than a simple repeal.
Comparing the American Health Care Act’s CBO estimate last week with a CBO estimate for a recent bill that would have repealed major provisions of Obamacare shows that, by 2026, 24 million more people would be uninsured under the AHCA, compared to 23 million under a full repeal. According to Sanger-Katz, the people who would lose out under each bill are different: Older people would suffer more under the AHCA, while those with pre-existing conditions and who buy their own coverage would be hit harder under a repeal. Still, the overall numbers are telling. Trump, who has promised to have “insurance for everybody,” has presided over a grand “repeal and replace” plan that would leave one million more people uninsured than if he had just repealed Obamacare.
Trumpcare has faced criticism from all sides, especially since the CBO released its estimate, which made concrete the fact that the plan is incredibly cruel. But this comparison is even more damning. Paul “The Wonk” Ryan has asserted that the bill “keeps our promise to repeal and replace Obamacare.” What he didn’t say (or didn’t know) is that his bill is worse than if he hadn’t bothered replacing it at all.