Michelle Bachman Exposes $105 Billion In Hidden Funding For Obamacare!

Discussion in 'Politics' started by CoinOKC, Mar 9, 2011.

  1. CoinOKC
    Yeehaw

    CoinOKC Donald Trump For President In 2020



    In the bill, instead of following the rules and letting the next Congress go through the appropriations process, Nancy Pelosi and House Democrats appropriated billions of dollars in funding for Obamacare without holding a single hearing, or even allowing Members of Congress a chance to read the bill. I guess this is what Nancy Pelosi meant when she said "we have to pass the bill, so you can find out what is in it."
     
  2. David

    David Proud Enemy of Hillary

    I would love to see the support BO would have for Obamacare if all the bribes, concessions, waivers etc that were necessary to push it through Congress were to magically go away. If you think about it honestly, large groups demanded to be excluded from the program before they would support it. Talk about your flawed legislation!
     
  3. Moen1305

    Moen1305 Not Republican!

    This is what you get when you listen to Michelle Bachmann. What a ding-bat! And she is the best you've got.

    Bachmann's $105 billion charge: Was the funding secret?
    By Angie Drobnic Holan, Louis Jacobson


    On the March 6, 2011, edition of "Meet the Press", Rep. Michele Bachmann said the Democratic-backed health care bill spent $105 billion "secretly." We check whether she's right.
    Rep. Michele Bachmann, R-Minn., used a March 6, 2011, appearance on NBC’s Meet the Press to attack the health care law for what she said was secret spending.

    "It is shocking the revelations of all the money that's been spent," said Bachmann, R-Minn. "There is a Congressional Research Service report that just was issued in February, and we discovered that secretly, unbeknownst to members of Congress, over $105 billion was hidden in the Obamacare legislation to fund the implementation of Obamacare. This is something that wasn't known."

    Readers deluged us with requests to fact-check the statement, so we did.

    We added up the spending Bachmann was referring to and got $104 billion -- very close to her number. Where our analysis diverges is her claim that the spending was "secret."

    We concluded that Bachmann has a point if you look at at the amount of media coverage the appropriations and transfers inspired. There was hardly any. However, she went further than that, charging that the provisions were passed "secretly, unbeknownst to members of Congress." And that was not accurate.

    The spending provisions were in the plain language of the bill; they did not vary dramatically from past congressional practice; and the bill was made public for 72 hours before the vote. On balance, we rated Bachmann’s statement Barely True.
     
  4. David

    David Proud Enemy of Hillary

    Duh, the bill was passed through stealthly & quickly so that no one had the opportunity to read it, study it or report on it's contents but you knew that, didn't you?

    Dr moen, do you believe Obamacare would have been passed without the deals cut with individual states and unions or the 900+ waivers granted to exclude certain organizations? Remember, these groups demanded either special favors or exclusion from the program before they would agree to support it.
     
  5. Lehigh96

    Lehigh96 Clown Hater

    So when a Republican is right and you can't dispute it, your response is to insult them and claim your superiority.

    What a ding bat!
     
  6. David

    David Proud Enemy of Hillary

    Dr moen has resorted to this on many, many times...then he dodges.
     
  7. Moen1305

    Moen1305 Not Republican!

    The Facts

    Bachmann is correct that there was a Congressional Research Service report issued in February, titled "Appropriations and Fund Transfers in the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act." It is actually an update of an earlier report first issued in October.

    In January, former Rep. Ernest Istook (R-Okla.) wrote an analysis of the October report for the Heritage Foundation, decrying what he saw as "an attempt to handcuff the current Congress" with directives on spending in future years. "Obamacare was designed to be the governmental equivalent of kudzu -- growing everywhere, propagating by multiple means, and sinking in its roots and becoming impossible to control," Istook wrote.

    Here's where it gets complicated. There is a total of $105 billion identified over 10 years in the CRS report, though only three programs, worth a little more than $25 billion, are funded the full 10 years. Most of the other programs listed in the report are funded for just a year or two, or perhaps five years. If Congress wants to alter this spending, it will need to pass a new law.

    Istook, in an interview, acknowledged, "Congress has the authority to change this, that's absolutely right," but as a former member of the Appropriations Committee he believed it is inappropriate for a bill authorizing new programs to also fund so many of them.

    Administration officials and other analysts, however, note that regularly appropriated money -- also known as mandatory spending -- is common in major pieces of health care legislation involving Medicare, Medicaid and the like. There are many other programs in the bill that are subject to annual appropriations, just not the ones identified in the CRS report.

    While Bachmann in her television appearances echoed Istook's argument that Obama "tied the hands of Congress," her main points have been that "this money was broken up, hidden in various parts of the bill" -- something akin to a "slush fund" -- and that it was done "secretly, unbeknownst to members of Congress."

    This is bordering on ridiculous. The Congressional Budget Office, the official arbiter of congressional legislation, conducted extensive analyses of the health-care bill. Many of the specific programs identified in the CRS report were listed and examined in the CBO reports that were regularly issued as the legislation made its way through Congress. The CBO reporting also included estimates of the spending for these programs year by year. For complicated reasons, the numbers in the CRS report and the earlier CBO reports are not always exactly the same, but much of it was there in plain sight.

    In fact, Bachmann is only talking about half of the ledger. The Obama administration insisted that the health care bill be "paid for" through various revenue raisers and cost cuts in order to not increase the deficit. In the end, CBO declared that the health care bill would reduce the deficit over the next decade.

    We have noted there are issues with how that deficit figure was reached, but it is disingenuous of Bachmann to talk only about the costs without noting that, in theory, all of this spending is fully funded.

    There is a further problem with Bachman's charge of "hidden" spending. The CRS report refers repeatedly to the many announcements made by the Department of Health and Human Services in recent months that it had spent some of the money authorized by Congress. In other words, the administration has not tried to hide this money at all; instead, it has trumpeted each dollar spent in a press release.

    As for the claim that "this money was broken up, hidden in various parts of the bill," we think she means that there were different sections in the legislation, depending on the issue. This is common practice for virtually all major bills, and it is not unusual or nefarious at all.

    Bachmann's spokesman did not respond to a request for comment.

    The Pinocchio Test

    There is no "bombshell" except Bachmann's bombast.

    She is correct that Congress already has appropriated some spending in future years, but her claim that this money was "hidden" does not have credibility. The money for these programs was clearly described and analyzed by the Congressional Budget Office before the legislation was voted into law.

    She needs to get a new sign.
     
  8. Moen1305

    Moen1305 Not Republican!

    No Secret: Bachmann Gets It Wrong
    March 8, 2011
    Rep. Michele Bachmann’s claim that Democrats "secretly" hid $105 billion in health care spending is way off base. It’s true that the new health care law contains many billions in future spending, but there was no secret about that.

    The Minnesota Republican told "Meet the Press" host David Gregory that "secretly, unbeknownst to members of Congress, over $105 billion was hidden in the Obamacare legislation to fund the implementation of Obamacare." But the truth is that much, if not all, of that money was well known before Congress voted on the bill — a fact that drew the wrath of Bachmann’s colleagues, including Sen. Thad Cochran, the ranking Republican on the Senate Appropriations Committee.

    The health care law, for example, mandates funding for these big-ticket items that were much debated and discussed prior to the final vote:

    ■$40 billion to fund the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) in fiscal years 2014 and 2015. Congressional authorization of CHIP was due to expire at the end of fiscal year 2013, but the health care law extended it for two years.

    ■$11 billion over five years for community health care centers, a figure that was arrived at when President Barack Obama publicly proposed a compromise between the $7 billion in the Senate bill and the $12 billion in the House version.

    ■$5 billion in one-time funding to create a temporary high-risk pool for people with preexisting conditions until a law can take effect banning insurance companies from refusing to cover such individuals.

    Since early March, Bachmann — the head of the congressional Tea Party Caucus — has claimed in interviews and press releases that the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act contained $105 billion in hidden funding. In a March 3 video posted on her YouTube website, Bachmann said "practically no member of Congress even knew that $105 billion of funding was contained" in the health care law, which gained final passage March 21, 2010, and was signed into law two days later.


    In a March 2 interview with Fox’s Greta Van Susteren, Bachmann cited an October 2010 report by the Congressional Research Service as her primary source for the "hidden" spending. The CRS report, titled "Appropriations and Fund Transfers in the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act," provided eight pages of mandated appropriations and fund transfers required by the law.

    Bachmann: Most members of Congress don’t even know.

    Van Susteren: Because they never bothered to read it?

    Bachmann: It isn’t that they didn’t bother to read it. It was hidden. As a matter of fact, a report came out just in October, Congressional Research Service, that revealed for the first time that over $105 billion was appropriated.

    On "Meet the Press," Bachmann raised the issue three times without prompting. She referenced an updated CRS report issued in February.

    Bachmann, March 6: There was a Congressional Research Service report that just was issued in February, and we discovered that secretly, unbeknownst to members of Congress, over $105 billion was hidden in the Obamacare legislation to fund the implementation of Obamacare. This is something that wasn’t known. This money was broken up, hidden in various parts of the bills.

    Neither CRS report describes the funding as "hidden." And both total a little more than $100 billion in mandated appropriations and fund transfers over 10 years. So, where did Bachmann learn about this supposed deception?

    On March 4, Bachmann issued a press release crediting former congressman Ernest Istook — who is now at the conservative Heritage Foundation — for working "to uncover this startling new information." Bachmann’s press release links to Istook’s Feb. 15 opinion piece in Human Events on the law’s "dirty little secret." In his article, Istook refers readers to a Jan. 27 report he wrote for Heritage, "How to Limit the Damage from Obamacare — Pulling it Out Weed by Weed."

    We looked at the reports by Istook and the CRS and found few secrets. For example, Istook notes that the "two largest single amounts" of "locked-in future spending" — about $40 billion of the $105 billion — will fund a two-year extension of CHIP. But there was a very public debate about whether to let CHIP expire after fiscal year 2013 and allow the children to be covered by Medicaid (as proposed by the House Democrats) or fund CHIP for two more years through fiscal year 2015 (as proposed by the Senate). The final bill extended CHIP for two more years and provided the funding for it.

    Istook, Jan. 27: The CRS devotes eight pages to a table listing the billions of locked-in future spending. The two largest single amounts are an appropriation of $19.147 billion for FY 2014 and $21.061 billion for FY 2015 for the Children’s Health Insurance Program (which existed before Obamacare).

    Unlike Bachmann, Istook’s report makes no claim that the Democrats secretly hid funding in the health care law. Instead, it argues that the legislation was "deliberately designed" to make defunding of the law difficult because of these "advance appropriations." Difficult, but far from impossible. "As with every other federal program," he writes, "the level of funding can be adjusted — even zeroed out — by the current Congress." That’s exactly what he advocates doing.

    In an e-mail to us, Istook said it is "within the range of fair comment and opinion" for Bachmann to say that funding for these and other programs was a secret because "the usual course is for legislation to authorize appropriations to be made, not to include them in the legislation that creates programs." He added: "The fact of the huge amount of advance appropriations has undoubtedly been largely unknown to most people and certainly was not trumpeted loudly by sponsors of the measure."

    Largely unknown to most people, perhaps, but not those who read the bill or followed the debate — including members of Congress.

    On Feb. 22, 2010, three days before his "health care summit" with invited members of Congress, the president unveiled his health care proposal in an attempt to reconcile the differences between the House and Senate bills. Obama’s proposal provided funding to continue CHIP, siding with the Senate. Georgetown University’s Center for Children and Families put out a press release that day that said: "CHIP would be funded through September 30, 2015, two years beyond its current expiration date."

    The president’s proposal also included $11 billion for community health centers — one of the other big-ticket items listed in the CRS reports cited by Bachmann. The White House released a summary of his proposal that included this description:

    White House, Feb. 22, 2010: Invest in Community Health Centers. Community health centers play a critical role in providing quality care in underserved areas. About 1,250 centers provide care to 20 million people, with an emphasis on preventive and primary care. The Senate bill increases funding to these centers for services by $7 billion and for construction by $1.5 billion over 5 years. The House bill provides $12 billion over the same 5 years. Bridging the difference, the President’s Proposal invests $11 billion in these centers.

    Throughout the debate, the nonpartisan Kaiser Family Foundation provided charts comparing the various health care bills and policy papers explaining major proposals — such as a January 2010 paper on creating temporary high-risk pools for people unable to get health insurance because of preexisting medical conditions. Of the high-risk pools, Kaiser wrote: "Congressional health reform bills would establish a National High-Risk Pool Trust Fund and appropriate $5 billion to support the program over the duration of the reform implementation period." In its final chart summarizing the new law, Kaiser made more than a dozen references to money being appropriated for programs big and small — ranging from the high-risk pools ($5 billion) to expanding the role of the Medicaid and CHIP Payment and Access Commission ($11 million). Both items were also included in the CRS list of mandated appropriations.

    The fact that the bill contained mandatory funding rankled Republicans at the time. On the eve of the health care debate in the Senate, the top-ranking Republican on the appropriations committee criticized the Democrats for bypassing the annual appropriations process in drafting the health care bill and other legislation. In a floor speech, Cochran made the same point Istook did in his report, warning that "once a funding stream is made mandatory, it is extremely difficult to reduce or cut off the spending."

    Cochran, Nov. 19, 2009: Of most immediate concern is the health care bill on which we will soon begin debate.

    The bill reported by the Senate Finance Committee creates new programs with direct appropriations that should be funded or not funded through the annual appropriations process. There are mandatory programs for maternal, infant, and early childhood home visitation and for personal responsibility education for adulthood training. There are grants for school-based health centers, a demonstration program for emergency psychiatric care, and a demonstration program to address health professions’ workforce needs.

    A previously authorized childhood obesity program is directly funded with a mandatory appropriation. Many of these programs are funded for only a few years, just enough time to get funding recipients invested in the program, after which expectations will be overwhelming that the programs be continued with annual appropriations.

    We understand Cochran’s and Istook’s point that legislation typically does not both authorize and appropriate funds. But Bachmann is just wrong to characterize the mandated appropriations in the health care law as "hidden." It was, as the saying goes, hidden in plain sight.
     
  9. Moen1305

    Moen1305 Not Republican!

    Fact-checkers hit Bachmann over claim that $105B hidden in healthcare reform
    Washington Post: 'There is no "bombshell" except Bachmann's bombast'
    By Andy Birkey | 03.09.11 | 11:31 am

    Rep. Michele Bachmann hit the cable news circuit this week alleging that the Affordable Care Act contained $105 billion in “hidden” spending. She dubbed the revelation a “bombshell” and announced the news on Meet the Press, Fox’s Sean Hannity show, Fox’s “On the Record” with Greta Van Susteren and WCCO’s Sunday Morning with Esme Murphy over the last few days. Politifact found Bachmann’s claim to be “barely true,” but the Washington Post disagreed, giving Bachmann four of its “Pinocchios.”
    Politifact said it was “deluged” with suggestions that the Pulitzer Prize–winning fact-checker rate Bachmann’s statements, and when it did, it found her claims to be barely true. Here’s why:

    We added up the spending Bachmann was referring to and got $104 billion — very close to her number. Where our analysis diverges is her claim that the spending was “secret.”

    We concluded that Bachmann has a point if you look at at the amount of media coverage the appropriations and transfers inspired. There was hardly any. However, she went further than that, charging that the provisions were passed “secretly, unbeknownst to members of Congress.” And that was not accurate.

    The spending provisions were in the plain language of the bill; they did not vary dramatically from past congressional practice; and the bill was made public for 72 hours before the vote. On balance, we rated Bachmann’s statement Barely True.

    The Washington Post, however, found Bachmann’s claims to be very false, giving her four out of four “Pinocchios,” a reference to the chronically lying puppet of children’s story fame.

    “There is no ‘bombshell’ except Bachmann’s bombast,” wrote the Post. “She is correct that Congress already has appropriated some spending in future years, but her claim that this money was ‘hidden’ does not have credibility. The money for these programs was clearly described and analyzed by the Congressional Budget Office before the legislation was voted into law.”
     
  10. Lehigh96

    Lehigh96 Clown Hater

    Let me fix this up a bit

     
  11. Moen1305

    Moen1305 Not Republican!

    So, even though it was plainly written in the bill and the media didn't give it enough press but Bachmann gets a pass for not doing her job and reading the bill before she voted against it? I see.
     
  12. rlm's cents
    Hot

    rlm's cents Well-Known Member

    Considering she was to only one to mention it out of 543 peers and superiors, I figure she is due some accolades.

    BTW, 543 is not a math error. That includes the Pres, VP, delegates and commissioner.
     
  13. Moen1305

    Moen1305 Not Republican!

    A year later!!!
     
  14. rlm's cents
    Hot

    rlm's cents Well-Known Member

    How about the other 453 that had the same share and did not mention it? And that is not to exclude the vast majority of the press. Mosst specifically, it does include the speaker of these lines;

    I guess your comments are saying that open government should only occur when the Rep's are controlling, but not when the dips are. That sounds like good logic - NOT!
     
  15. Moen1305

    Moen1305 Not Republican!

    What am I missing here? If it was written into the bill and has been available for several months at least, how is it the fault of the adminstration that Bachmann or anyone else didn't read it until now? Can you say "manufactured issue".

    BTW please jump on the Bachmann crazy train. I would really enjoy beating you guys senseless at every depot stop. :)
     
  16. rlm's cents
    Hot

    rlm's cents Well-Known Member

    Where do you want me to start - or are you missing that also?
     
  17. David

    David Proud Enemy of Hillary

    I applaud Bachman for the foresight she had to vote against the bill. Any of the morons who bowed to the pressure (or succumbed to the bribes) and voted for the bill without having the chance to read it deserve to lose their jobs...wonder what they think now about the details that are coming to light?
     

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