We all know repealing Obamacare will be a disaster, but the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) has given us some specific numbers to reference.
At the request of congressional Democrats, the CBO scored the bill to fully repeal Obamacare that was passed by Republicans in 2015 and the results are more or less apocalyptic.
Under the GOP's "repeal and delay" framework that calls for partially repealing the law now and figuring out a replacement later, 18 million people would lose their coverage within one year and tens of millions more would lose their coverage in following years.
The budget office said the estimated increase of 32 million people without coverage in 2026 resulted from several changes: about 23 million fewer people would have coverage in the individual insurance market; roughly 19 million fewer people would have Medicaid coverage; and these changes would be partly offset by an increase in the number of people with employment-based insurance.
Congressional Republicans have responded to the CBO report by saying there will be a replacement, but their replacement hasn't materialized and it remains to be seen if it ever will. Republicans have talked about passing a replacement for the past six years, but they've never actually drafted one.
High risk pools are not a replacement plan. Creating more "choice," as Republicans like to say, means nothing if you can't afford coverage, and reducing costs affords no benefit if your insurance carries life-time limits and doesn't cover pre-existing conditions.
Republicans have never emerged beyond the talking points phase of public policy. To say that you're going to create a "patient-centered system," or whatever, is not a policy. All they've ever managed to do is draft a series of white papers that outline their talking points, none have included real policy.
You can read the CBO report yourself here.
Premiums in the nongroup market (for individual policies purchased through the marketplaces or directly from insurers) would increase by 20 percent to 25 percent—relative to projections under current law—in the first new plan year following enactment. The increase would reach about 50 percent in the year following the elimination of the Medicaid expansion and the marketplace subsidies, and premiums would about double by 2026.