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Holtz-Eakin Discovers That Taking Away Health Benefits Can Save The Government Money

Former McCain campaign adviser and CBO chief Douglas Holtz-Eakin is out with a new report arguing that taking away health care benefits from middle class Americans — i.e. delaying the implementation of the Affordable Care Act — would save money that could then be used to reduce the national deficit. A two-year delay would yield $176 billion in savings over the next 10 years and a four-year freeze would mean $308 billion saved, they say. All this is a matter of priorities and if one wants to balance the budget by undermining a law that will help millions find affordable health insurance, then I suppose that’s the way to do it. I would argue, however, that a much more constructive way would be to offer better cost containment ideas — like speeding up the delivery reforms — that could help reduce spending. Delaying coverage expansion isn’t fixing anything. It’s only kicking the health can down the road.

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