Obamacare program costs $50,000 in taxpayer money for every American who gets health insurance, says bombshell budget report

It will cost the federal government – taxpayers, that is – $50,000 for every person who gets health insurance under the Obamacare law, the Congressional Budget Office revealed on Monday.
The number comes from figures buried in a 15-page section of the nonpartisan organization’s new ten-year budget outlook.
The best-case scenario described by the CBO would result in ‘between 24 million and 27 million’ fewer Americans being uninsured in 2025, compared to the year before the Affordable Care Act took effect.
Pulling that off will cost Uncle Sam about $1.35 trillion – or $50,000 per head.

The numbers are daunting: It will take $1.993 trillion, a number that looks like $1,993,000,000,000, to provide insurance subsidies to poor and middle-class Americans, and to pay for a massive expansion of Medicaid and CHIP (Children’s Health Insurance Program) costs.
Offsetting that massive outlay will be $643 billion in new taxes, penalties and fees related to the Obamacare law.
That revenue includes quickly escalating penalties – or ‘taxes,’ as the U.S. Supreme Court described them – on people who resist Washington’s command to buy medical insurance.
It also includes income from a controversial medical device tax, which some Republicans predict will be eliminated in the next two years.
If they’re right, Obamacare’s per-person cost would be even higher.
President Barack Obama pledged to members of Congress in 2009, as his signature insurance overhaul law was being hotly debated, that ‘the plan I’m proposing will cost around $900 billion over 10 years.’
It would be a significant discount if the White House could return to that number today.

In that same speech, Obama claimed that there were ‘more than 30 million American citizens who cannot get coverage.’
$900 billion spent on those people would equate to no more than $30,000 each – less than two-thirds of what the CBO now says the program will cost when the dust settles.
The CBO and the Joint Committee on Taxation, a group of members from both houses of Congress, prepared Monday’s report on the overall direction of the federal budget.
They estimated that ‘the net costs of the coverage provisions of the ACA [Affordable Care Act] will rise sharply as the effects of the act phase in from 2015 through 2017.’
Those costs will ‘rise steadily through 2022′ before leveling off for three years, the groups’ economists determined. But even at that point, the Obamacare program will cost the governemnt ‘about $145 billion’ each year.
That number doesn’t include the insurance premiums and out-of-pocket health care costs paid by Americans – only the government’s role in implementing the law and paying for its guarantees.
And the law will still leave ‘between 29 million and 31 million’ nonelderly Americans without medical insurance, says the CBO.

CBO January 2015 Outlook on Obamacare


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CBO: Obamacare to cost $2 trillion over the next decade

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BY: Philip Klein

President Obama’s healthcare law will spend about $2 trillion over the next decade on expanding insurance coverage but still leave 31 million Americans uninsured, according to an analysis from the Congressional Budget Office released on Monday.

When Obama pitched the healthcare law to Congress, he said it would cost “around $900 billion” over 10 years. But his statement was misleading because the way the law was designed, the major spending provisions didn’t kick in until 2014. This meant that 10-year estimates at the time the law was passed in 2010 were artificially low, because they included four years (2010 through 2013) in which spending was negligible.

Story continues below

The new CBO analysis finds that between fiscal years 2016 and 2025, spending on the law’s expansion of Medicaid will cost $920 billion and insurance exchange subsidies will cost nearly $1.1 trillion. The major spending provisions, taken together, will total $1.993 trillion.

Obamacare does include tax increases and Medicare cuts that previous CBO reports have found would offset the new spending, but CBO is no longer providing a full budgetary analysis of the law.

The CBO also said it expected the law’s exchanges to cover 21 million by the end of the 2016 fiscal year and for Medicaid to cover an additional 13 million — gains that it projects will be partially offset by a reduction of 11 million people in employer or other existing coverage.

By 2025, the end of the projection period, the CBO projects that Obamacare will increase insurance coverage by a net of 27 million, while 31 million will remain

Immigrants in state of Illinois illegally to get state-funded kidney transplants

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“Immigrants in state illegally to get state-funded kidney transplants”

And we wonder why America is broke! Liberals that’s why!

By Meredith Rodriguez
Chicago Tribune

Immigrants in Illinois without legal permission can get state-paid kidney transplants
When he was diagnosed with renal disease almost two years ago, Gustavo Galvez had never heard of dialysis. Doctors told Galvez, who had been working in the United States 17 years without legal residency, that it would help his failing kidneys function and allow him to live.

“But after one month, two months, I learned, and I did not like it,” said Galvez, 35. “I did not want dialysis.”

After each treatment he felt dizzy, nauseated, tired and achy, he said. The excruciating routine depressed him, but Galvez hopes the pain will soon end.

A new state law will for the first time provide funding for kidney transplants for immigrants in Illinois without legal permission, as well as the annual medications needed to maintain the transplanted organs. With the state’s help, Galvez may finally get on a waiting list for a transplant. That has changed his outlook on his life.

“I felt that there was hope,” he said.

Since the law went into effect in October, transplant centers in Illinois have been evaluating some of the 686 immigrants here illegally in the state’s kidney dialysis program to see whether they are healthy enough to receive kidney transplants and placing some on kidney transplant waiting lists.

Those opposed to spending tax dollars on such immigrants, however, say the program will unfairly saddle legal citizens with health costs better spent on Americans. Even proponents of the program worry that such immigrants from other states may try to take advantage of Illinois’ new program, which could heavily inflate costs.

While a representative for the federal Medicaid office said it does not track related laws in other states, lobbyists, lawmakers and officials in Illinois say this is likely the first law of its kind in the country.

“I think it’s an amazing thing that the state of Illinois had the courage to do that,” said Dr. Jose Oberholzer, chief of the Division of Transplantation at the University of Illinois at Chicago, who helped lobby for the new law along with state Rep. Cynthia Soto. “It’s medically the right thing to do, ethically the right thing to do.”

Cost savings of transplant

The cost savings ultimately persuaded legislators and the Illinois Department of Healthcare and Family Services to support the law, according to the department’s director, Julie Hamos, and Dr. Arvind Goyal, who oversees the department’s Medicaid program.

After federal bills passed in the 1980s that barred the use of federal money for immigrants in the country illegally, except during emergency care, such immigrants in the United States with kidney failure could receive dialysis only when complications sent them to the emergency room. The practice is outrageously expensive and causes other health problems, Oberholzer said.

“In Illinois … they said, ‘That doesn’t make sense. If you have kidney failure, that is a constant emergency,'” Oberholzer said.

Illinois is one of several states that designated dialysis as an emergency treatment, Oberholzer said. Yet because the same states did not allow immigrants in the country illegally to be placed on organ donor waiting lists or conduct the roughly $100,000 procedure to transplant kidneys offered by their loved ones, the state invariably committed to offering dialysis — estimated at about $60,000 per year in Illinois — for the rest of such a patient’s life.

“The statistics are compelling,” said Kevin Cmunt, president and CEO of Gift of Hope, the organization that coordinates organ and tissue donations in the northern three-quarters of Illinois and northwest Indiana. “Life expectancy on dialysis is not great, and quality of life is just awful.”

A transplant pays for itself in reduced cost for dialysis in about 21/2 years, officials who support the law said. The state will also pay $10,000 to $20,000 per year for generic anti-rejection medication as long as patients remain state residents, Goyal said.

Hunger strikes and roundtables

A few years ago, people without Social Security numbers who sought transplants were quickly discharged from hospitals, according to Kim Ziyavo, a deacon at Our Lady of Guadalupe Anglican Catholic Mission in Chicago. Although there is no provision barring them, hospitals said immigrants in the country illegally without access to insurance or Medicaid likely did not have the money to properly care for the scarce resource.

“We can get the kidney in. That’s not the point,” said Yolanda Becker, director of the kidney and pancreas program at the University of Chicago Medical Center. “The point is, how do you keep the kidney?”

Those in need of a transplant were told they had to first prove they had $80,000 in their bank account, enough to cover a few years of anti-rejection medication needed to keep the kidney functioning for several years, activists at Our Lady of Guadalupe Mission said.

Hunger strikes and marches followed. The Rev. Jose Landaverde of Our Lady of Guadalupe Anglican Catholic Mission, a longtime activist, was part of those protests.

“It was very radical at the time,” Landaverde said of the campaign he and other activists started five years ago. “The fight for transplants was not an easy one.”

The protests gained media attention with weekslong hunger strikes outside the city’s major hospitals. Protesters marched from Little Village to UIC and then to Northwestern. They conducted a funeral march for one woman who had died after not receiving a liver transplant.

There were also success stories, like that of Jorge Mariscal, of Melrose Park, who was diagnosed with kidney failure at age 16 while a junior at West Leyden High School in Northlake. Mariscal waited eight years while on dialysis for a kidney transplant.

Doctors told him his chance for a transplant in the United States was low and suggested he go back to Mexico, a prospect he never considered, he said, as he has lived virtually his entire life in the United States. Instead he raised thousands of dollars from family and friends, and his mother joined a hunger strike. In 2012, Loyola University Medical Center agreed to transplant a kidney donated by his mom.

“I immediately felt a difference in my body,” Mariscal said. “People who saw me said my color changed. They said I actually looked alive.”

Eventually, Landaverde said, administrators at major hospitals in Chicago, including Rush, Northwestern and Christ, began meeting with activists and doctors at roundtables to discuss ways they could facilitate transplants for people without insurance, including creating a nonprofit pharmaceutical company.

None of that happened, Landaverde said, but behind the scenes, doctors and legislators were also working, placing a provision in a larger Medicaid bill that passed this year.

“I think this was a unique situation in which the legislators, the community and the physician advocates for this group of people came together and were able to forge an unusual piece of legislation,” said Dr. David Ansell, chief medical officer of Rush University Medical Center and a vocal advocate of the measure.

The right timing

State Rep. Soto, D-Chicago, put off Oberholzer and his boss, Enrico Benedetti, head of the University of Illinois at Chicago Department of Surgery, for several years, she said, saying the political climate for such a bill was not right. After assessing a couple of recent laws passed in favor of immigrants in the country illegally, she said, the timing was right.

“It was long-overdue,” Soto said.

Aiding their cause was legislation passed last year in Illinois that allowed immigrants here illegally to get driver’s licenses. About 45 percent of such immigrants who signed up for driver’s licenses have also agreed to be organ donors, Ansell said.

“The Hispanic community as a whole is obviously a very important and growing part of our constituency,” Gift of Hope’s Cmunt said. “We’ve been supporters to finding ways to make access to transplants fair, and (Soto’s) bill is certainly one of those things.”

Soto said the Illinois law passed without debate or controversy. But the issue of providing transplants has not been universally welcomed across the country.

“Obviously if someone is in a life-threatening situation, you have to provide the care no matter what,” said Ira Mehlman, a spokesman for the Federation for American Immigration Reform, which advocates for enforcement of immigration laws and reductions in immigration levels. “But people do have the option of having this surgery done back in their home countries. We have finite resources here to deal with all the medical needs. … It’s perfectly reasonable to say we are going to place the interests of American citizens ahead of citizens of other countries who are here in violation of our laws.”

About 200 to 300 of the immigrants here illegally on the state’s kidney dialysis program will be suitable for a transplant, Oberholzer estimated. A handful will get transplants this year, he said, and an additional 20 or so next year.

A study at the University of Illinois estimated conservatively that at least half of them could receive a living donor kidney transplant without affecting the organ pool for U.S. citizens and legal residents, Oberholzer said. The other half will be added to a waiting list, he said, that in this region is about five to seven years.

A Catch-22

There is concern among even supporters of the new law, however, that immigrants from other states who are in the country illegally will move to Illinois to take advantage of it.

Landaverde said he has heard of a handful of people who moved to Illinois so they might eventually receive transplants. While some may object to that practice, Landaverde believes there’s a greater responsibility to treat those in need.

“People in Illinois will get upset, but there has to be a conscience also,” he said. “Every human being — we should deserve to be treated with dignity.”

Other supporters of the bill contended that if more people move to Illinois to take advantage of its program, it could spell long-term trouble.

“We support that law. … But we don’t want to be abused by people around the country who will see Illinois as a magnet for these kind of procedures,” Hamos said. “We’ve already alerted the General Assembly members who are promoting this, as well as the transplant advocates, that it’s very important to monitor this because at some point the General Assembly may want to revisit this.”

Aside from a strict residency requirement to get the transplant, Hamos said, pharmacies will not be allowed to mail anti-rejection medication. The Department of Healthcare and Family Services will monitor not only how each patient fared after the transplant but how much of an expense it was compared with what dialysis would cost.

The key, Cmunt said, will be watching the number of patients on emergency dialysis in the state.

Hospital payments

If handled responsibly, the program will be a money-saver, according to Oberholzer. But either way, hospitals may see it as a financial burden, particularly because payment from the state will be made in one bundle, he said.

The state will pay $60,000 to $70,000 for each transplant, the same as it pays for citizens enrolled under Medicaid, Goyal said. Unlike for citizens, however, ancillary services such as donor costs, surgeon and provider fees, evaluations and tests will be paid for in one lump sum of $15,000.

“It’s like, well, what if something happens? If there’s a complication?” said Becker University of Chicago Medical Center.

Hospitals would have to eat extra costs, Oberholzer said.

Becker said she is cautiously optimistic that the new law will allow the state to do something good for immigrants here illegally but pointed out that the issue of fairness in doling out organs extends beyond the immigrant community. She said she has been working with legislators to find ways to help citizens who have difficulty getting insurance and paying for anti-rejection medications.

Advocates of the law believe that if carried out properly, Illinois’ solution for a complicated medical issue will be a model for the country.

“I think everybody is looking for a solution to these problems,” Cmunt said. “I think if we can be successful and reduce our dialysis rolls and get these people back to work, then other states will say, ‘Wow, that totally makes sense. That would be great for the country.'”

Tribune reporter Annie Sweeney contributed.

Not All Kids Born in the US Should Be Made Citizens

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Genevieve Wood

Human experience and common sense tells us you get more of the behavior you reward – and there has been no better case study of that on a policy level than the issue of illegal immigration.

That is why any serious immigration reform considered in the next Congress should revisit the concept of birthright citizenship (namely that all children born on U.S. soil are citizens, regardless of their parents’ status), or what is sometimes referred to as the “anchor baby” issue.

Congress should do so for primarily the following reasons:

It incentivizes illegal immigrants to have children on U.S. soil in hopes it will allow them, the parents, to gain legal status.
It fuels chain migration, the process whereby one legal family member, once 21 years of age, is able to apply to bring in parents, siblings and in-laws. At the age of 18, one is able to apply to bring in a spouse and any unmarried children.
It is costly to the U.S. taxpayer. While illegal immigrants themselves do not qualify for welfare, they can obtain Medicaid and food stamps on behalf of their U.S.-born children. Findings in one study show that “nationwide, 40 percent of illegal alien-headed households receive some type of welfare.”
And last but not least, birthright citizenship, as currently understood, is arguably unconstitutional.
According to NumbersUSA, citizenship is given to “an estimated minimum 400,000 babies each year who don’t have even one parent who is a U.S. citizen or permanent legal immigrant.”

Simply having a baby in the U.S. doesn’t mean the parents, if here illegally, will be allowed to stay – they and the child can still be deported and the child can then apply to re-enter the U.S. when he/she reaches 21 years of age. But there’s no question that an illegal immigrant who has a U.S.-born child has a better chance than others of getting an immigration court or judge to grant him some sort of legal status or delay in deportation.

And when it comes to increasing immigration numbers in the U.S., findings from a report by the Center for Immigration Studies in 2010 show chain migration is the main driver:

Of the 1,130,818 immigrants who were granted legal permanent residency in 2009, a total of 747,413 (or, 66.1 percent) were family-sponsored immigrants. A change to U.S. immigration laws in the late 1950s — one that allowed for the admission of extended family members outside the nuclear family — resulted in the average annual flow increasing from 250,000 then, to over 1 million today.

For America’s first 100-plus years, the idea that just because someone was born on U.S. soil made them a U.S. citizen was disavowed. But a Supreme Court decision in 1898 (yes, there was judicial activism back then, too) that broadly and wrongly interpreted the 14th Amendment’s Citizenship Clause changed all that.

A recent study of 194 countries shows that only 30 grant a form of birthright citizenship.

The original intent of the Citizenship Clause was to ensure former slaves were given citizenship status. It was never intended to give such status to children born here because their parents were living here as foreign ambassadors, diplomats or consuls, or simply because their non-citizen parent(s) had a baby while visiting or residing, legal or otherwise, in the U.S.

Heritage Foundation legal scholar Hans von Spakovsky puts it this way:

It is just plain wrong to claim that the children born of parents temporarily in the country as students or tourists are automatically U.S. citizens. They do not meet the 14th Amendment’s jurisdictional allegiance obligations. They are, in fact, subject to the political jurisdiction (and allegiance) of the country of their parents. The same applies to the children of illegal aliens because children born in the United States to foreign citizens are citizens of their parents’ home country.

I rarely suggest America follow international trends, but this is one area where we could take a cue from others around the world. A recent study of 194 countries shows that only 30 grant a form of birthright citizenship. No European countries allow it – the United Kingdom ended the practice in 1983 and Ireland in 2004. Among advanced economies, the U.S. and Canada are the only two countries that still allow it.

Congress is empowered via the Constitution to determine our country’s naturalization laws and should put an end to “birthright” citizenship.


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Statistical sleight of hand

With so much riding on the success of the Affordable Care Act, officials in the Obama administration felt it necessary to inflate the number of Americans who had signed up for health insurance.

They tried pulling off this statistical sleight of hand by combining the number of people who had purchased dental coverage on the healthcare exchanges with those buying health insurance.

Somehow, the officials didn’t think anyone would notice … despite the fact they had previously reported the dental and medical totals separately.

In May, the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) reported that 8 million individuals had bought medical coverage and about 1.1 million had signed up for dental insurance. Then in September, CMS reported that 7.3 million people had purchased insurance through Obamacare without specifying that the total included both medical and dental purchases.

A breakout of the data showed about 7 million had bought health coverage and 380,000 dental coverage.

The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), which oversees CMS, had to backtrack and admit that officials “erroneously” folded sign-ups for the two different plans together. “A mistake was made,” a spokesperson for HHS said in a statement, adding that, in fact, 6.7 million Americans had purchased medical coverage as of October 15.

CMS chief Marilyn Tavenner will have the opportunity to explain when she testifies before the House Oversight Committee on December 9.

-Noel Brinkerhoff

Obama’s Amnesty Order Gives Medicaid And Social Security To Illegal Aliens

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By Brian Anderson, November 25, 2014.

When Obama “legalized” 5 million undocumented immigrants with the stroke of his pen last week, he promised these newly amnestied individuals would not be eligible for ObamaCare subsidies. In a rare and shocking occurrence the President was technically telling the truth. However, these legal illegal aliens will qualify for Medicaid, which is actually better because it is way more free.

The Washington Post reports that Medicaid is but one of the many taxpayer-funded subsidies illegal aliens can now exploit:

Under President Obama’s new program to protect millions of illegal immigrants from deportation, many of those affected will be eligible to receive Social Security, Medicare and a wide array of other federal benefits, a White House official confirmed.

In last Thursday’s amnesty speech, Obama negotiated this deal with the illegal aliens without getting anything in return:

“We’re going to offer the following deal: If you’ve with been in America more than five years. If you have children who are American citizens or residents. If you register, pass a criminal background check and you’re willing to pay your fair share of taxes, you’ll be able to apply to stay in this country temporarily without fear of deportation,” said Obama in opposition to the rule of law he claims to be so fond of.

What Obama doesn’t mention is that most amnestied illegal aliens will not be paying any income tax because they don’t make enough money. Not only does this open them up to billions in government freebies, it means they will be getting huge tax refund checks.

The way this works is:

Current federal law holds that people who pay those taxes and are deemed “lawfully present” in the United States can collect benefits under those programs when they become eligible. They may also receive survivors and disability benefits.

“If they pay in, they can draw,” said White House spokesman Shawn Turner in an e-mail to The WaPo.

But the only way they really have to “pay in” is to have a couple of bucks extracted from a paycheck for FICA taxes. After that, they are in the system and free to exploit its bounty.

All these illegals have to do is get one of Hermano Obama’s work permits, collect a big tax refund, and then hold a job for a week or two. With as little as one measly paycheck a full compliment of “social safety net” handouts will be available to them.

Contrary to Obama’s claim that amnesty will be a boon for the economy, his executive order just created 5 million or so money sponges. These illegal aliens with no fear of deportation will suck up billions of dollars every year while contributing very little.

The Washington Post is quick to point out that the illegals will not be eligible for student financial aid, food stamps and housing subsidies, but I disagree. At the state level many illegal aliens already qualify for these giveaways and I’m almost certain that the liberals are working hard to make this a reality at the federal level as well.

Obama told us that these immigrants broke the law, coming to this country illegally, because they were looking for a better life. It don’t get much better than living for free off of the hard work of others. Isn’t it strange how the few times Obama is telling the truth it is actually much worse than when he’s lying?

The Hidden Tragedy of Entitlements: What a 12-Year Welfare Abuser Says About Finding a Job


It is not compassionate for people to be in the welfare system for years at a time. America is about people bettering themselves and attaining dignity and self-respect through supporting themselves and achieving things.

That is why the story of Kiara, a 30-year-old woman with four children, is disturbing on multiple levels. Not only should taxpayers be upset with her blase attitude about abusing the welfare system, they should feel bad for the thousands of Americans like her who are spending their lives wasting their time, instead of living life to the fullest and achieving things.

YoungCons points out a great quote by Ronald Reagan, “Welfare’s purpose should be to eliminate, as far as possible, the need for its own existence.”

This follows a sage quote by Benjamin Franklin: “I am for doing good to the poor, but…I think the best way of doing good to the poor, is not making them easy in poverty, but leading or driving them out of it. I observed…that the more public provisions were made for the poor, the less they provided for themselves, and of course became poorer. And, on the contrary, the less was done for them, the more they did for themselves, and became richer.”

People cannot be empowered when they are on welfare. What is needed is more opportunity, and that’s where the federal and state governments can come in. Governments should stop penalizing successful businesses, eliminate burdensome and unnecessary regulations, and let people work and lead their own lives.