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Your World Host Can’t Stand To Admit GOP Hypocrisy On Health Care Reform And The Deficit

Reported by Guest Blogger - December 30, 2010 -

By Brian

Your World’s guest host, Brian Sullivan, was so wedded to defending the Republicans, that he twisted himself into a pretzel – before finally agreeing that his Democratic guest had his facts correct – trying to rebut Rep. Rob Andrews’ charge that it’s hypocritical for Republicans to repeal health care reform while claiming to be deficit hawks.

Andrews said about the Republicans, "I thought I heard the number one thing these guys ran on was reducing the deficit and the debt, and I think that they need to tell us whether repealing the health care bill in fact increases the deficit. Our official, non-partisan auditor, the Congressional Budget Office, says it does."

Sullivan said, "But that is assuming a slowdown in the increase in the rates of Medicare and even the Center for Medicare/Medicaid Study's (sic), CMS’ own numbers, Congressman, say they're planning for a $251 billion increase in costs over the next 10 years."

"Have you read the CBO report?" Andrews asked.

Sullivan said he had. But he added that a blog post from the CBO director last March indicated he was uncertain whether that was really the case. (In April director Douglas Elmendorf said he was standing by the official estimate.)

Andrews pointed out that the official projection was a decrease to the deficit of $143 billion. He added, “Now, they’ve never changed that estimate. So repealing the health care law increases the deficit, doesn’t it?"

Sullivan was obviously flummoxed. "Not necessarily… I’m just going to quote the CBO."

"Have they changed their official position?" Andrews persisted.

"No they have not," Sullivan admitted.

Andrews continued, "Well then repealing the health care law increases the deficit, doesn’t it?"

Sullivan tried to protest. "But when I have the CBO director writing…"

Andrews interrupted. "You just told your audience that they haven't changed their official position. So given that fact, doesn’t repealing the health care bill increase the deficit?"

Sullivan argued, "The CBO director says it's unclear, Congressman.” But he later admitted, “Yes, the official score says it will." As Andrews continued to press, Sullivan admitted the CBO “has not changed its official score."

Andrews continued pressing. "So, as of this point, would repealing the health care law increase the deficit? …Doesn’t a vote to repeal… the health care law violate the promise to decrease the deficit?"

Sullivan sputtered a bit. “Not unless – if you cut other spending, that would balance it out.”

Andrews did not let him off the hook. "So if the repeal bill that’s coming to the House floor in the second week of January, doesn't cut other spending ,then it increases the deficit, right?"

After a long pause, Sullivan conceded, "I guess it does… if we don't cut something else." Then, saying, “We’re just going to go in circles, we’ll wait and see if the CBO changes its estimate,” he ended the segment.

Andrews is a Top Dog for pushing Sullivan into submission.

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