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CBO Torches ACA Repeal

CBO exposes Republican health care plan. NYT: “The House Republican plan to replace the Affordable Care Act would increase the number of people without health insurance by 24 million by 2026 … The budget office estimated that 52 million people would be uninsured in 2026 under the House Republican bill, compared with 28 million projected under current law.”

A leaked internal WH analysis predicts worse coverage. Politico: “The executive branch analysis forecast that 26 million people would lose coverage over the next decade, versus the 24 million CBO estimates. The White House has made efforts to discredit the forecasts from the nonpartisan CBO.”

“It Penalizes Older People” observes NYT’s Margot Sanger-Katz: “…the way the bill achieves those lower average premiums has little to do with increased choice and competition. It depends, rather, on penalizing older patients and rewarding younger ones. According to the C.B.O. report, the bill would make health insurance so unaffordable for many older Americans that they would simply leave the market and join the ranks of the uninsured.”

GOP staggered. Politico: “[Can’t sugarcoat it. Doesn’t look good,’ said Sen. Bill Cassidy (R-La.) … Senate Majority Whip John Cornyn of Texas sought to distance the Senate from the House bill, saying ‘we expect to do better’ … ‘I’m concerned about the Medicaid population. That’s the biggest part of the coverage for Ohio,’ said Sen. Rob Portman (R-Ohio) … Asked about the 24 million increase in the number of Americans CBO says could be uninsured in 2026, Senate Finance Chairman Orrin Hatch (R-Utah) said: ‘Naturally, I’m concerned.'”

GOP plan is cruel, finds TNR’s Brian Beutler: “… for all the GOP’s vindictiveness, the collateral damage would be borne disproportionately by Trump’s own supporters. By phasing out the ACA’s Medicaid expansion, Trumpcare would leave the poor and near-poor far worse off, including the white rural poor in states critical to Trump’s victory.”

Budget Battle Begins

Dems ponder shutdown over immigration crackdown and Planned Parenthood. NYT: “In a letter to Senator Mitch McConnell, the Republican majority leader, Senator Chuck Schumer and four other Democratic leaders made clear how far they were prepared to go: ‘We believe it would be inappropriate to insist on the inclusion of such funding in a must-pass appropriations bill that is needed for the Republican majority in control of the Congress to avert a government shutdown so early in President Trump’s administration.'”

Trump budget goes to Congress. The Hill: “President Trump will send his budget to Capitol Hill Thursday, setting off a brawl with Democrats as well as fellow Republicans who are alarmed over a range of proposed deep cuts to federal programs … Usually, spending fights are delayed until the late fall, but this year there will likely be a showdown next month, as government funding is due to run out on April 28 … The Republican chairmen of the Senate and House Appropriations committees are taking a cautious approach, pledging only to review the administration’s spending proposals carefully. But rank-and-file members are rebelling already.”

Breakfast Sides

Gorsuch consolidates support. Politico: “President Donald Trump’s Supreme Court nominee has breezed through more than 70 meetings with senators. Opponents who’ve scoured his record have found little to latch onto. And some Democrats are privately beginning to believe that Gorsuch — barring a blunder at his Senate confirmation hearings next week — will clinch the 60 votes he needs to be approved without a filibuster.”

Businesses seek to rollback new minimum wage hikes. American Prospect: “The business lobby, however, isn’t letting the will of the people get in its way. Chambers of commerce, restaurant organizations, and other opponents of a livable wage have launched lawsuits challenging the constitutionality of the Arizona and Washington ballot measures and have embarked on heavy-handed lobbying campaigns in Maine to convince friendly Republicans (and even some Democrats) to undermine the minimum-wage ballot measure.”

DNC “unity” committee seeks to heal ideological divide. The Hill: “Former DNC executive director Jennifer O’Malley Dillon is Clinton’s representative as the group’s chair, while longtime union leader and Sanders confidant Larry Cohen is the vice chair … [The committee will] debate over rules on caucuses and primaries … The commission also has the power to conduct an autopsy on the party’s disastrous 2016 [campaign] as it calls for recommendations on issues like making the party more competitive across the country, empowering the grassroots and cutting the reliance on big donors.”

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