I appeared on Friday night, November 1, on Fox News @Night with Shannon Bream, to discuss Elizabeth Warren’s Medicare-for-All Tax Plan.

When Warren first announced, a couple of weeks ago, that she would be releasing a tax plan to pay for her Medicare-for-All proposal, I predicted on the Shannon Bream show that it would be based on a set of unrealistic assumptions and projections to rig the calculation so she could falsely claim no middle class tax hike:

Well, I think there’s gonna, it’s going to be the way things typically go in Washington. There’ll be projections, there’ll be formulas put into the projections that will get her the result that she wants. But the question will be whether those formulas in those projections are realistic. Because as we know, government programs always end up costing a lot more than they’re projected to cost. And the revenues that come from taxes to fund those programs are always less than projected. So I think that’s going to be the real test. Is she coming up with the real world projection and a real world plan or is it essentially going to be pie in the sky? And apparently many of her democratic contenders do not have confidence that she’s going to come up with a realistic plan. So this criticism isn’t even coming from Republicans. It’s coming from other Democrats. And I think that’s a very telling sign.

Yesterday Warren released the tax plan.

The tax plan should be called a tax fraud. It’s smoke and mirrors, with unrealistic assumptions and projections used to rig the calculations so Warren could claim there will be no middle class tax increase. The math in Warren’s plan is no more credible than her claim to be Native American.

I was back on Shannon’s show last night on the same topic. The segment video is below.

This is the NY Times analysis to which I was referring, acknowledging that, among other things, Warren relies on “ambitious assumptions” about lowering health care costs. If those assumptions are wrong, which they almost certainly are, her plan would cost tens of trillions of dollars more:

Like Mr. Sanders, Ms. Warren would essentially eliminate medical costs for individuals, including premiums, deductibles and other out-of-pocket expenses. But it is not clear if her plan would cover the costs of free health care for everyone. It relies on ambitious assumptions about how much it can lower payments to hospitals, doctors and pharmaceutical companies, and how cheaply such a large system could be run.

Several economists have said providing free health care would cost trillions more over a decade.

“We made different assumptions, because we didn’t think these kinds of assumptions were realistic,” said Linda Blumberg, a health economist at the Urban Institute, whose detailed assessment of Medicare for all found it would require $34 trillion in added federal spending.

From the revenue side — putting aside whether we even want government to do all this — the math also doesn’t work. Phillip Klein at The Washington Examiner has a good analysis of the funny math and how the taxes will in fact hit the middle class, something Warren tries to deflect with word games.

Here’s the segment:

BREAM: So how will Democrats like Senator Elizabeth Warren who rolled out trillions in new taxes as part of her Medicare for all plan today, campaign against this economy. Let’s discuss with Democratic strategists, Jason Nichols and clinical professor of law at Cornell, William Jacobson, also founder and publisher of the Legal Insurrection website. Great to have both of you with us.

WAJ: Great to be here.

BREAM: Okay, so let’s start with this. Senator Warren says this about her plan. My Medicare for all plan gives everyone good insurance and cuts their healthcare costs to nearly zero without increasing middle-class taxes. One penny ask you both. Is that possible?

WAJ: That’s not possible. And I think all the analyses that have come out today, including in the New York times, say that her plan includes very aggressive assumptions about the components, cost savings, income that will be generated, or taxes that will be generated from high tax payers.

And nobody thinks it’s realistic. And that’s the problem with it. She’s gonna take insurance away from hundreds of millions of people, private insurance. That’s a certainty under her plan. Under her plan. unlike Obama’s, Obama said, you can keep your plan if you like it. Her plan is you cannot keep your plan, even if you like it. And what do we have? So, you know, you’re going to lose your private health insurance. What are you going to get? You’re going to get a promise from her, a promise for her, which even a liberal leaning organizations like the New York times have analyzed as perhaps being unrealistic. And I think it’s unrealistic in so many ways that it’s really a betting the entire economy on her promise.

* * *

BREAM: … The polling does show us that people will favor some of these ideas, but then when you ask them things like, okay, are you going to lose private insurance? Are taxes going to go up? Are you going to be delayed trying to get tests or treatment or see doctors? The support falls away very quickly when you talk about those realities.

WAJ: And I think that’s the problem with Elizabeth Warren that scares so many mainstream Democrats is that Medicare for all sounds great in concept, but when you turn to 140 million people and you say, we’re taking away the insurance that you like, that you’ve depended on and what is the guarantee that what you’re going to get is better?

There is no guarantee. It’s a promise. It’s based on assumptions that probably won’t come true and I think what people want is choice. They want to be able to control their own lives and that’s what’s missing both from Bernie’s plan and also from Elizabeth Warren’s. They are taking away the individual choice that Americans make.

BREAM: Americans are all about that, and some of them are still stinging from not keeping the plants they thought they could keep under president Obama. So there’s gotta be some convincing done for voters out there….

 
 
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