CBO Gives Flunking Grade to Republican Plan on Obamacare Mandate

| Wed Feb. 26, 2014 3:47 PM EST

"Ouchy ouchy," says Ed Kilgore today. "No conservative love for CBO this week, I suspect."

There was plenty of conservative love for the CBO last week, of course, because they estimated that an increase in the minimum wage might reduce employment. This week, however, the subject is a conservative plan to eliminate the Obamacare requirement that employers with health plans cover everyone working more than 30 hours a week. Republicans have been bellyaching forever that this is going to cause employers to reduce hours in order to get workers just under the 30-hour minimum, thus causing enormous pain to hardworking real Americans throughout the country. There's not much evidence that this is actually happening, but whatever. They want to get rid of the 30-hour mandate anyway.

Sadly, the CBO's opinion of a Republican bill to do this was not good. The bill would reduce the number of workers covered by employer healthcare by about a million people; increase use of Medicaid and CHIP; and increase the budget deficit by about $74 billion over ten years.

That's some bill. I think Kilgore is right that Republicans aren't going to be giving the CBO a lot of love this week.

UPDATE: And while we're on the subject, Republican attacks on Obamacare just generally don't seem to be doing well lately. In the latest Kaiser survey asking Americans if they want to keep Obamacare or repeal it, the keepers are ahead by a margin of 56-31 percent. That's up from last year, when they were up by only 47-37 percent. Greg Sargent has the deets here.