What to Know – About the CBO

A few months ago, many people would have struggled to tell you about the significance of a ‘CBO score.’ My how things have changed!

The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) will release its score for the new version of the American Health Care Act today. And the eyes of Arizona and the rest of the country will be watching.

Take a look at some of the recent headlines regarding the upcoming release of the CBO score:

  • Washington Examiner  “High-stakes CBO score to guide Senate on Obamacare repeal”
  • Bloomberg  “Fate of Republican health bill teeters on new financial analysis”
  • The Hill  “What to watch for in new healthcare score
  • Roll Call  “GOP group launches health care ad ahead of CBO score

The last one is particularly interesting here in Arizona as one of the districts targeted in the ad is our state’s 2nd congressional district, which is represented by Rep. Martha McSally.

From the Washington Examiner:

The political nonprofit aligned with House Speaker Paul Ryan is planning an advertising blitz to counteract a potentially bad score for the Republican healthcare bill from the Congressional Budget Office.

In addition, Rep. McSally is holding a phone-in town hall tonight….following the release of the CBO score. Here are the details from Tucson.com.

U.S. Rep. Martha McSally announced she will hold a telephone town hall at 5:30 p.m. Wednesday, May 24, giving constituents a chance to talk to her directly about health-care legislation.

To participate in the call, dial 877-229-8493 and enter the code 114341.


The forum comes nearly three weeks after McSally, a Republican, voted in favor of the revised American Health Care Act, which narrowly passed on a party-line vote.

If some of today’s happenings have piqued your interest and you like to get a better handle on what the CBO score is and how it works – check out this New York Times article titled, “How to read the CBO score of the health bill like an expert.”

And CNN.com listed three key points to look for when the score is released.

Total Savings – The CBO score is high-stakes. Republican leaders are watching closely not only just to be able to say their bill saves money, but to make sure the CBO confirms it hits the $2 billion savings goal laid out by the budget committee.

Coverage Numbers – This is the biggie. Earlier scores of the American Health Care Act predicted 24 million fewer people would have health insurance in 2026. The Medicaid rolls would be 14 million lower than they would be under current law.

Premium Costs – Republicans in the House have claimed the changes they made in the latest version of the health care bill were all aimed at lowering premiums for consumers….CBO is expected to weigh in on how these changes will affect premiums.

Share your thoughts on the growing interest in CBO scores and let us know if you plan to take part in Rep. McSally’s phone-in town hall tonight. If you do, what will you be asking her? Generating meaningful conversations around the important health issues of the day is another way we are working toward our long-term goal of making Arizona the Healthiest State in the Nation!

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