September 11th, 2009
12:16 PM ET
9 years ago

CNN Truth Squad: Does the reform bill create 53 new bureaucracies?

The Statement:

U.S. Rep. Charles Boustany, R-Louisana, said in his response to President Barack Obama's address that he "read the bill Democrats passed through committee in July" and it "creates 53 new government bureaucracies."

The Facts:

Rep. Boustany is referring to a list also cited by his Republican colleagues. That list comprises "all the new boards, bureaucracies, commissions and programs created" in the health reform bill H.R. 3200. A look at his claim does show that many of the entities would be new.

But it would be misleading to characterize some of them as governmental bodies, which is what many people think of when they define the word bureaucracy. Some of them are modifications to existing programs in the Social Security Act. One of those programs is entitled

"Standardizing Electronic Administrative Transactions," designed to reduce paperwork. A single proposal to widen existing responsibilities of "Nursing Facilities" and "Skilled Nursing Facilities" was counted as two programs.

Boustany's statement could give the impression that all the entities would be long-term. But one, the Reinsurance Program for Retirees, would be a temporary entity under the bill. Another, the Optional Operation of State-Based Health Insurance Exchanges, would only be created if states pursued the program.

In a couple of cases, a commission is formed and then the ombudsman assigned to it is counted separately. Four of the new "bureaucracies" are pilot programs.

The Verdict:

Misleading. While there are many new entities, the Republican count exaggerates the number of new bureaucracies.

Filed under: Health care fact check
soundoff (168 Responses)
  1. Ohio

    Spin, CNN, Spin!

    You opt to discount any bureaucracy that some aren't "government" bureaucracy - that's your definition - not Rep Boustany's. You can not call him a liar because YOU choose your definition. A bureaucracy is a bureaucracy, long-term or short. BTW - is there really such a thing as a short-term bureaucracy?

    If the bill has errors and uses different names for the same agency, that is not the fault of Rep Boustany and does not make him the liar.

    Rep Boustany did not even count the "Exchanges" - as many as one per state.

    CNN - quit being lazy - finish the report. If it's not 53, what is the number?

    September 11, 2009 01:45 pm at 1:45 pm |
  2. The TRUTH will set you free!

    As it is said, the TRUTH will set you free and a lot more of the Republicans (and company) will be showing their true colors – a spade is a spade! Everything the President attempts to do is wrong according to the party of "No" and "Fear". The problem is that most Americans are not that stupid and their tactics will back fire on them becasue the real issue is that they can not deal with the fact that an INTELLIGENT, GOD FEARING MAN and ONE OF GOD'S CHILDREN who is attempting to do the right thing by the people of the USA IS GOING TO SUCCEED! For most of them, reality has finally sunk in and they are having a hard time dealing with the fact that the POTUS is a black man (which should not matter what his/her race is) with class, character and integrity. The Joe Wilson's of this country are only showing their true colors and there are plenty more just like him – more chickens will be coming home to roost! Ignorance is salvageable but stupidity is forever – sometimes the more things change the more they stay the same!

    We need to pray for our President and ask God to order his steps and give him the strength and courage to do the right thing for the people of the USA, becasue when God is for you, no one can be against you!


    September 11, 2009 01:48 pm at 1:48 pm |
  3. Dave

    I know some of the things that president Obama said my have been what he believe but might not be the full story but, These republicans just flat out lies.

    September 11, 2009 01:53 pm at 1:53 pm |
  4. Barry In Las Vegas

    So CNN Truth Squad – what is the number 50? Why can't you be reporters of fact for a change instead of covering up for Obama?

    Keep up the good work – your viewership numbers just keep dropping because you have no credibility.

    September 11, 2009 01:54 pm at 1:54 pm |
  5. Anonymous

    Joe Wilson Yelled Because:

    1. He could not control his emotions.
    2. It was a Sudden Outburst.
    3. He was very upset.
    4. It was Not Intentional and Not Premeditated.

    Every person who Murders says the same defenses 1 to 4 above.

    Do we exonorate all Murderers based upon the above defenses?


    Did you really just compare an outburst to a murder???? Yikes.

    September 11, 2009 01:54 pm at 1:54 pm |
  6. bdog

    And they keep ON LYING.
    G-NO-P= no integrity, just lies

    September 11, 2009 01:55 pm at 1:55 pm |
  7. Jeff in FL

    wanna talk about lies???? please tell me how BHO plans to not "add a dime to the deficit" but cover 39 million more people (not all Americans) and impove the care provided. Now that's misleading...

    September 11, 2009 01:55 pm at 1:55 pm |
  8. diridi

    absolutely no....ok...

    September 11, 2009 01:59 pm at 1:59 pm |
  9. Michael

    Pilot programs mean that there is a chance that the program will grow which will end up costing more money.

    Democrats are for lots of change unless it affects those who support them like all the trial lawyers who do not want tort reform because they make money off of mal-practice suits.

    September 11, 2009 02:00 pm at 2:00 pm |
  10. notfooledbydistractions

    Typical republican tactics – exagerrations, lies and propaganda. I guess they're too weak to stand on their own ideas or policies.

    At this point, I wouldn't trust a republican if they told me the sky was blue.

    September 11, 2009 02:00 pm at 2:00 pm |
  11. Willy Brown

    CNN and the words Truth Squad = oxymoron

    September 11, 2009 02:00 pm at 2:00 pm |
  12. mjm

    Bill said ..... "These Republicans are a bunch of Idiots, not letting Obama try"

    This isn't little league where every kid get's to swing a bat and everyone gets a trophy.

    This is Billions of dollars of tax payer's money, millions of health care jobs, and millions of people's health. And you want to "try it".

    I wouldn't be too quick to through around the word "idiot" if I were you.

    September 11, 2009 02:01 pm at 2:01 pm |
  13. victim of republican greed

    Considering Rush's history of abuse, to watch this really large piece of humanity go into a frenzy on a daily basis, one cannot help but wonder if he has a heart attack, will the insurance companies deny him coverage because of pre-conditions?

    September 11, 2009 02:07 pm at 2:07 pm |
  14. CIE

    There are probably more than 53. Look at SS, Medicare, Medicaid and how many gov jobs that support them. Th Health Care beauracies will dwarf them.

    This is the same congress that put billions of dollars of earmarks when the country was going down the financial toilet. There isn't a piece of pork the Dems don't like.

    September 11, 2009 02:09 pm at 2:09 pm |
  15. Jennifer

    For all of you screaming about the "disrespect" show by Wilson – look back to 2005 at the State of the Union, when Democrats in Congress were booing and heckling President Bush.

    Not saying it's right either way, but you all either need to show your disgust for both events, or neither. Otherwise, you're just hypocrits.

    September 11, 2009 02:10 pm at 2:10 pm |
  16. Abdur Azad

    I am 70 and have 2 major surgeries. I know Palin's "death panel" theory is utter lie. So also your allegations. My personal experience demands that a complete overhaul of our healthcare system is absolutely necessary, and we need it now.
    By the way, what inspired Rep. Dr. Boustany and his team to work against this reform? I have learnt insurance companies have spent more than 300 million this season to defeat the move. I understand their interst. Because Status quo would give them another BILLION. But why Boustany(s)? Honestly, would you, Dr. Boustany, tell the public how much you and other leaders around you got from insurance companies and their lobbysts? Please have courage and tell us the fact.
    Again, soryy for being personal. As a doctor have you or are you involved in any medical malpractice?
    Please doctor, don't be so much selfish. Tell us the truth.

    September 11, 2009 02:11 pm at 2:11 pm |
  17. BJC

    I guess Obama will be putting ACORN to work filing claims? Can you imagine the bureaucracies that will have to be formed just for the Union and ACORN workers in Obama's Ration Care Office. Will the taxpayers have to pay these people salary? Will they be considered Federal employees? We are going to get screwed folks.

    September 11, 2009 02:11 pm at 2:11 pm |
  18. Jett

    Really, I believe that "misleading" is a misleading term for the facts of this issue. You indicate that as many as a dozen of the 53 claimed may be precieved as somthing else, or may be temporary, or may be counted in a different way, so then are you prepared to state what the actual real number would be at the enactment of the legislation? If so why did the truth squad not include that in their report? I would like to get real information, I expect to recieve news that is researched, not simply a reaction.
    It would seem to me that you agree that many (more than 38) new government bureaucracies. So how is this misleading? I believe that we neeed to understand why and how Health care reform will help americans, 53 may be too much government or not enough to get the job done. Where are the facts?

    September 11, 2009 02:12 pm at 2:12 pm |
  19. victim of republican greed

    How on earth do you expect republicans to be accurate when they use Sarah Palin's rants as being true? The standard of truth is set too high for the likes of these right wingnuts.

    September 11, 2009 02:15 pm at 2:15 pm |
  20. Jane

    Gee, The republicans exaggerating about something. Who'd have thought! What a bunch of sore losers – be upfront and give your ideas.

    September 11, 2009 02:19 pm at 2:19 pm |
  21. U.S. Common Sense

    From Bill:

    1. Only when we will try the new Health Reforms, we will learn if it works. If it does not work out, we will revert back. There is no harm in trying.


    Sorry Bill, but it isn't that easy. To claim "no harm in trying" ignores the costs and confusion (not to mention time) associated with trying to change so many aspects of our health care system all at one. The proper thing to do would be for Congress to enact the proposed changes with Medicare and see if they can make that financially solvent. If they are successful, then they have a case to implement it nation-wide. However, if they are not successful, only a handful of our nations population will be directly impacted, and the continuing loss of money will be isolated to just one aspect of our government.

    "No harm in trying?" Let's try to get back in touch with reality, Bill.

    September 11, 2009 02:21 pm at 2:21 pm |
  22. pete

    Once again, CNN finds with the form of the critique, but not the subtance of the critique, and labels it false.

    September 11, 2009 02:23 pm at 2:23 pm |
  23. New Age Democrat

    @ Bill

    Bluntly put, you're a complete idiot. To compare murders to the outburst by Wilson is reprehensible. Go back in the hole you crawled out from.

    September 11, 2009 02:26 pm at 2:26 pm |
  24. Chuck

    Boustany may be a cardiologist, but, he sure is not a politician. When playing a politician, he looks somewhat idiotic, unbelievable, and a spreader of lies. More and more, the Republican Party is or has become inclined the exaggerate and spread lies.

    September 11, 2009 02:34 pm at 2:34 pm |
  25. Huh

    Bill, your on the wrong thread.

    September 11, 2009 02:35 pm at 2:35 pm |
1 2 3 4 5 6 7