Please see below our fact check on comments made by Sen. Crapo (R-ID) this evening on the Senate floor where he falsely claimed that health reform will cost $5 trillion in new federal spending and raise taxes on the middle class, when in fact reform will reduce the deficit and help families and small businesses:

RHETORIC: Sen. Crapo (R-ID) Said that Health Insurance Reform Is “$5 Trillion in New Federal Spending,” Makes $500 Billion in Cuts To Medicare,” And $2 Trillion In Tax Increases. “I think most Americans are very aware today that this bill comes at a huge price.  5 Trillion of (sic) new federal spending. 5 Trillion of new federal spending that is offset, if you will, by about $50 billion of cuts in Medicare – $500 billion in cuts to Medicare fact, $493 billion worth of cuts in the first 10 years – or tax increases. 2 Trillion tax increases in the first real 10 years of the full implementation of the bill. And there’s no question but that much of the tax increase that is included in this bill to pay for this massive increase in federal spending will come squarely from people in the United States who make less than $250,000 as a family or less than $200,000 as individuals.” [Crapo Senate Floor Speech, 12/8/09]

REALITY: THE PATIENT PROTECTION AND AFFORDABLE CARE ACT WILL REDUCE COSTS AND LOWER PREMIUMS FOR FAMILIES AND SMALL BUSINESS

WP: CBO Said The Senate Health Care Bill “Would Leave Premiums Unchanged Or Slightly Lower For The Vast Majority Of Americans, Contradicting Assertions By The Insurance Industry That The Average Family’s Coverage Would Rise.” “As the Senate opened debate Monday on a landmark plan to overhaul the nation’s health-care system, congressional budget analysts said the measure would leave premiums unchanged or slightly lower for the vast majority of Americans, contradicting assertions by the insurance industry that the average family’s coverage would rise by thousands of dollars if the proposal became law.” [Washington Post, 12/1/09]

NYT: CBO Said That The Senate Health Care Bill Could “Significantly Reduce Costs For Many People Who Buy Health Insurance On Their Own” And Would Reduce Premiums For People Who Get Their Insurance Through Their Employers. “The Congressional Budget Office said Monday that the Senate health bill could significantly reduce costs for many people who buy health insurance on their own, and that it would not substantially change premiums for the vast numbers of Americans who receive coverage from large employers. … In groups with 50 or fewer employees, it said, unsubsidized premiums in 2016 would average $7,800 a year for individuals and $19,200 for families — scarcely any different from the amounts expected under current law. Of the 25 million people receiving coverage from small businesses, it said, 3 million would qualify for subsidies, which would reduce their premiums by an average of 8 percent to 11 percent. Large employers would generally not be eligible for such assistance. Their premiums in 2016 under the bill would average $7,300 for individual coverage and $20,100 for family coverage, the report said. Under current law, the comparable figures would be $7,400 for individual coverage and $20,300 for family coverage.” [New York Times, 12/1/09]

Ezra Klein: “Congressional Budget Office: Reform Will Bring Down The Cost Of Health-Care Insurance.” “The Congressional Budget Office released a report today estimating changes to average premiums under the Senate health-care bill. The report is going to prove very important, and is going to confuse a lot of people. So let’s be very, very clear about what it says. The CBO’s analysis broke the health-care system into three parts: individual, small group and large group. The small- and large-group markets account for 159 million Americans, and have very little change in premiums. But what change they see is in the right direction: Health-care reform is expected to reduce premiums in the large group market by about 1.5 percent, and in the small group market by about 0.5 percent. … So in the final analysis, the effect of reform on your typical individual market purchasers is to give them insurance that’s about 30 percent better but only 10 to 12 percent more expensive, and then assure them subsidies that will lower their payments by more than 50 percent. And if you’re in the small group or large group markets, your premiums are expected to fall a bit.” [Ezra Klein, Washington Post, 11/30/09]

MIT Analysis: The Senate Health Care Bill Would Reduce Premium Prices In The Individual Health Insurance Market. “A new analysis by a leading MIT economist provides new ammunition for Democrats as the Senate begins formally debating the historic health-reform bill being pushed by President Barack Obama. The report concludes that under the Senate’s health-reform bill, Americans buying individual coverage will pay less than they do for today’s typical individual market coverage, and would be protected from high out-of-pocket costs. … Gruber concludes that people purchasing individual insurance would save an annual $200 (singles) to $500 (families) in 2009 dollars. And people with low incomes would receive premium tax credits that would reduce the price that they pay for health insurance by as much as $2,500 to $7,500.” [Politico, 11/28/09]

Group Of 23 Economists Included “Republicans, Democrats, Former Bush Administration Officials And Nobel Laureates,” All Of Their Recommendations Are Included In Legislation. In a Washington Post Op-Ed, Peter Orszag noted that, “the Office of Management and Budget reached out to 23 of the nation’s most prominent economists — a group that included Republicans, Democrats, former Bush administration officials and Nobel laureates — to get views on the four elements critical to reducing long-term health-care costs while improving the quality of care for all Americans. Each of the steps endorsed by this bipartisan group is embodied in the legislation under consideration.” [Washington Post Op-Ed, 11/19/09]

REALITY: THE SENATE HEALTH CARE BILL WOULD SLASH THE DEFICIT BY OVER $750 BILLION IN THE NEXT 20 YEARS DESPITE WHAT THE REPUBLICANS’ CLAIM

Claim That Senate Bill Would Cost $2.5 Trillion Was Generated By Senate Budget Committee Republicans. Fox News reported that, “Republicans have countered the CBO estimate with a figure of their own: $2.5 trillion, an estimate that comes out of the Senate Budget Committee minority’s analysis of Reid’s plan.” [Fox News, 11/19/09]

Roll Call: Senate Bill “Slash[es] The Deficit By A Whopping $777 Billion Over The Next 20 Years. “At first blush, Reid scored a coup with his $849 billion bill, because Democrats said the Congressional Budget Office estimated that it would slash the deficit by a whopping $777 billion over the next 20 years while providing insurance for an additional 31 million Americans. The price tag is also less than the $900 billion President Barack Obama had called for and the $1.2 trillion cost of the House-passed version… ‘He was applauded. His staff was applauded,’ said Senate Budget Chairman Kent Conrad (D-N.D.), a deficit hawk who said Reid did ‘an exceptionally good job.’” [Roll Call, 11/18/09]

REALITY: MEDICARE SAVINGS DO NOT CUT BENEFITS, THEY STRENGTHEN MEDICARE

AARP CEO: The [Senate Health Care] Legislation Does Not Reduce Any Guaranteed Medicare Benefits.” “But on Wednesday afternoon, the AARP joined other senior groups to oppose the GOP amendment, offered by Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.). ‘The legislation before the Senate properly focuses on provider reimbursement reforms to achieve these important policy objectives,’ AARP CEO Addison Barry Rand wrote in a letter to Reid. ‘Most importantly, the legislation does not reduce any guaranteed Medicare benefits.’” [Washington Post, 12/2/09]

FactCheck.org: “We Never Have Said That Seniors Would Suffer ‘Massive Cuts To Medicare Benefits’ Under [Health Reform Legislation], And In Fact Have Done Our Best To Debunk [Those] Claims.” FactCheck.org wrote: “We never have said that seniors would suffer ‘massive cuts to Medicare benefits’ under the pending House or Senate overhaul bills, and in fact have done our best to debunk claims to that effect.” [FactCheck.org, 11/3/09]

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