For days, the political world had been waiting nervously for the Congressional Budget Office’s assessment of the House Republicans’ Trump-endorsed proposal to replace Obamacare. On Monday afternoon, when the numbers-heavy report finally appeared, one figure it contained dominated all the others: twenty-four million.
This was the C.B.O.’s estimate of how many fewer people would have health insurance if the Republican legislation—which is called the American Health Care Act—passes. In 2018, the first year that many of the bill’s changes would go into effect, fourteen million “more people would be uninsured under the legislation than under current law,” the report said. The difference “would rise to 21 million in 2020 and then to 24 million in 2026.”