Collender on Broder

David Broder’s dour take on the Senate health reform bill has become best known for Harry Reid’s rebuke that “to focus on an editorial written by a man who has been retired for many years and writes a column once in a while is not where we should be.” But Stan Collender offers a more substantive response:

David Broder has a column in today’s The Washington Post that I find close to incomprehensible.

First he says that the Congressional Budget Office’s substantive, detailed analysis shows that the bill proposed by Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) will reduce the deficit.

(Note to David: CBO does not give its “blessing” to legislation; all it does is score the bill.)

Second, he says that the CBO scoring that shows the bill reducing the deficit compared to existing law is not as valuable as polls that show that Americans don’t believe it. And he says that the polls are somehow more correct that CBO even though one group actually analyzed the bill while the other got its almost certainly less-than-complete-and accurate information from someone else.

Third, Broder says “every expert I have talked to says that the public has it right. These bills, as they stand, are budget-busters.”

As Collender points out, the CBO director and his staff would seem to count as experts. These economists think the CBO knows what it’s talking about.