April 23rd, 2010
09:22 PM ET
4 years ago

McConnell on health care report: 'hard not to say, I told you so'

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell reacted to an early government analysis of the new health care law.
Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell reacted to an early government analysis of the new health care law.

(CNN) – Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell reacted to an early government analysis of the new health care law. The report said that millions more Americans will obtain health care, but predicted that health costs will rise and questioned whether Medicare cuts would cause doctors and hospitals to drop Medicare patients.

Regarding the report's concerns, the Republican leader told CNN, "It is hard not to say, 'I told you so."'

McConnell talked about the report in a telephone interview on Friday with CNN Chief National Correspondent John King. The Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services Office of the Actuary – part of the Health and Human Services Department - released the report on Thursday. Congressional Republicans requested the analysis.

The report said that 34 million more Americans will have health insurance by 2019. It also said that Medicare will now be solvent, for a longer time, than it would have been without the law.

But the analysis projected that health care spending would rise more than expected. The report also predicted that Medicare cuts could cause doctors and hospitals to drop Medicare patients.

McConnell told King that those items in the report bolster Republican claims that the new health care law is too expensive.

"All the things we were saying during the debate and an administration actuary now confirms them," McConnell said. "We said there would be access problems for seniors and the poor."

"This bill is more unpopular today than when he [President Obama] signed it," McConnell added.

The director of the White House Office of Health Reform, Nancy-Ann DeParle, responded to the government analysis on the White House blog.

DeParle wrote that the report "found that under reform, Medicare will be stronger, with premiums decreasing by nearly $200 per person per year by 2018." She also said it predicted that the life of the Medicare Trust fund would extend by 12 years.

"But there are some areas where we disagree with the Actuary, particularly when it comes to the new law and the growth of health care costs," DeParle wrote. "Health policy experts and economists who have studied the bill have agreed that the new law will help bring down health care costs."

Regarding any potential Medicare access problems, DeParle wrote, "There is no evidence that providers would not continue to serve Medicare patients, and the report ignores key provisions that will strengthen our health care workforce."

The Obama administration believes that the report is overly pessimistic.

"Well, that is all they can say," McConnell told King.

"We warned them from the beginning about costs and access and these other issues and now they deserve to have to deal with the reality here."

McConnell reiterated that Republicans will run on a slogan of "repeal and replace" in the November elections with regard to the health care law.

The Republican leader also talked about Democratic candidates. He told King that the health care law "is an albatross around their neck."


Filed under: Health care • JKUSA • John King USA • Mitch McConnell • Popular Posts
soundoff (32 Responses)
  1. Duane Bernard, Tucson, Az

    How about we "replace and repeal" the Republican Party next election!

    April 24, 2010 12:54 am at 12:54 am |
  2. Bob of Lompoc

    Those watery eyes make me think our hateful Southern white male politician has been into the Jack Daniels. His ideas are either crazy, or he did, as the Irish say, "take to the drink".

    April 24, 2010 01:12 am at 1:12 am |
  3. LexGreen

    What the report leaves out is: without health care reform, health care costs would have risen.

    For McConnell to suggest that stopping reform would have prevented health care costs from going up is simply a bold faced lie.

    If McConnell wants to propose more change, then he should submit a bill.

    April 24, 2010 01:17 am at 1:17 am |
  4. Darth Vadik, CA

    Only Republicans will look at 34 million more people insured and call it a failure.

    Why is McConnell worried anyway? His government health care is taken care off, and it's not that his old behind has to pay.

    If I was McConnell, I'd worry more about that perpetual constipation he has, he looks like he needs to take a dump every time he's in front of a camera.

    April 24, 2010 01:18 am at 1:18 am |
  5. Mohammed Chawla

    In any legislation, there is bound to be many " laws of inintended consquences".

    Not only did the Republicans had pointed out some of these flaws, but the Democrats ignored them. There was and still is a very broad opposition to this bill.

    Democrats have been masterful at "smoke and mirror" accounting to hide the true cost of every legislation and they have done so with this bill as well.

    May be the losses they suffer in the midterm elections might be the lesson that they need to learn.

    April 24, 2010 01:22 am at 1:22 am |
  6. Peter E

    I continue to be amused by the staunch opposition to public health option by lawmakers and senior citizens... who ARE on government sponsored health care themselves already! They can have it but the rest of us can't? In every civilized country in the world universal health coverage worked. But OH NO! It's not American! America can only permit health care if it funnels more of our hard earned money into profits for corporations! That's America! Screw the sick! Give more money to the rich!

    April 24, 2010 01:28 am at 1:28 am |
  7. jules sand-perkins

    There will be politics and rumors of politics.
    Aside from ludicrous price abuse by the medical industry caused by the availability of government and private insurance to pay too much for services and medication, the problem with health care here is that far too many USA citizens refuse to work, making themselves unable to support their own health care and the rest of the economy.

    April 24, 2010 07:17 am at 7:17 am |
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