Before the debate over health care reform really got started, President Obama said that the final result of reform should NOT increase the deficit (and debt). In fact, he said he would not sign a bill that added "one dime" to the deficit.
Well, we're about to find out how serious that promise was, because it turns out that the calculator at the Congressional Budget Office doesn't work so well. In its first look at the Senate version of the bill, the CBO showed a savings, leading Obama was able to take to the stage and declare "mission accomplished", saying:
"This bill with strengthen Medicare and extend the life of the program.
Because it’s paid for and gets rid of waste and inefficiency in our
health care system this will be the largest deficit reduction plan in
over a decade. In fact, we just learned from the Congressional Budget
Office that this bill will reduce our deficit by $132 billion over the
first decade of the program, and more than one trillion dollars in the
decade after that."
But it turns out that it's easy to show a bill costs less than it really does if you count the "savings" twice. Which is what the CBO just admitted that it did in its analysis of the bill.
The result? A 170 BILLION dollar hole in the deficit.