Medicare No Longer a Big Budget Buster

Margot Sanger-Katz claims that we’re “looking at the biggest story involving the federal budget and a crucial one for the future of the American economy. Every year for the last six years in a row, the Congressional Budget Office has reduced its estimate for how much the federal government will need to spend on Medicare in coming years. The latest reduction came in a report from the budget office on Wednesday morning.”

“The changes are big. The difference between the current estimate for Medicare’s 2019 budget and the estimate for the 2019 budget four years ago is about $95 billion. The country still faces a projected deficit in future decades … but it is not likely to require the level of fiscal pain that many assumed several years ago.”

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“In all, technical changes have been responsible for a 12 percent reduction since 2010 in the estimates for Medicare spending over the decade ending in 2020. In dollar terms, that’s over $700 billion.”

Medicaid spending is also down, according to Kaiser Health News: “Medicaid spending is expected to drop by $40 billion — or about 1 percent — over the next decade.”

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  • bullet2354

    Gaming the wonks? Hmmmmmm

    Detroit Expected $55 Million in Property Tax Revenue; It Brought in $6.7 Million
    Capitol Confidential ^ | 8/27/2014 | Jarrett Skorup

    Posted on 8/27/2014 4:19:59 PM by MichCapCon

    In the fourth quarter of its fiscal year 2014, the city of Detroit projected it would bring in $55 million in property taxes. Instead, it collected just $6.7 million, about $48.3 million short of what it expected.

    • NMoshe

      Typical conservative denialism. When the facts don’t support your worldview or narrative, just pretend that they’re false, made up, or doctored.

      • As we all know, reality has a strong liberal bias 😉

    • unskew the polls! medicare budget busted by detroit racist arglebargle!

    • Yes, all projections need to be taken with a grain of salt and shouldn’t be used to justify not improving a program. Still there is a HUGE difference between the CBO projections consistently improving over a number of years as compared to one projected quarter from a bankrupt midsize american city.

    • Lorehead

      Reading the actual source, those are bills that were collected after the new fiscal year on July 1, 2014, not some sudden and unanticipated fall in the assessed value of land in Detroit.

      In any case, the CBO has a much better track record, and frequently is too pessimistic. It did not, for example, predict the surpluses of the mid-’90s.

  • that is called “bending the curve” (and solving the entitlement “crisis” without any billionaire-friendly “grand bargain”)

  • Wynstone

    Didn’t Romney run on restoring the $700 billion in spending cuts thus making the program unsustainable again?

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