Oct 7, 6:04 PM EDT
CBO says health care bill costs $829B over decade
By DAVID ESPO
WASHINGTON (AP) — Health care legislation drafted by a key Senate committee would expand coverage to 94 percent of all eligible Americans at a 10-year cost of $829 billion, congressional budget experts said Wednesday, a preliminary estimate likely to power the measure past a major hurdle within days.
The Congressional Budget Office added that the measure would reduce federal deficits by $81 billion over a decade and probably lead to “continued reductions in federal budget deficits” in the years beyond.
The report paves the way for the Senate Finance Committee to vote as early as Friday on the legislation, which is largely in line with President Barack Obama’s call for the most sweeping overhaul of the nation’s health care system in a half-century.
Sen. Max Baucus, D-Mont., the committee chairman and principal architect of the measure, hailed the budget report.