Trump Admin Keeps Up Attacks On CBO Before It Scores ACA Repeal Bill

AP

On Sunday, members of President Donald Trump’s administration joined congressional Republicans in preemptively criticizing the non-partisan Congressional Budget Office’s analysis of what their plan to repeal Obamacare would cost or how many people would lose their health insurance if it passes.

“We continue to think, and have for a long time, that the CBO is scoring the wrong thing,” former Rep. Mick Mulvaney (R-SC), the newly confirmed director of the Office of Management and Budget, said on ABC’s “This Week.” “We don’t think the CBO is counting correctly.”

“So are you simply saying that if the Congressional Budget Office comes out tomorrow or the day after and says fewer people will be covered, many millions fewer people will be covered, the costs will be going up, that you’re simply rejecting that analysis?” George Stephanopoulos asked.

“I love the folks at the CBO, they work really hard, they do, but sometimes we ask them to do stuff they’re not capable of doing, and estimating the impact of a bill of this size probably isn’t the best use of their time,” Mulvaney replied.

White House chief economic adviser Gary Cohn said on “Fox News Sunday” that the CBO score has been “meaningless” in the past.

“CBO will do what they need to do, we will see what the score is,” he said. “In fact, in the past, the CBO score has really been meaningless. They’ve said that many more people will be insured than are actually insured. But, look, when we get the CBO score, we’ll deal with that.”

House and Senate Republicans preemptively criticized the CBO’s analysis of their bill on Wednesday.

Sen. Tim Scott (R-SC) called the CBO “consistently inconsistent,” and said he did not “put that much weight on a CBO score.”

Rep. David Brat (R-VA) said that the CBO has “scored everything wrong for decades.”

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Esme Cribb is a newswriter for TPM in New York City. She can be found on Twitter @emquiry and reached by email at esme@talkingpointsmemo.com.
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