Late this afternoon CBO will publish an updated estimate of the effects of repealing the individual mandate requiring people to have health insurance meeting specified standards and that imposes penalties on those without an exemption who do not comply.
In that document, CBO and the staff of the Joint Committee on Taxation estimate that repealing that mandate starting in 2019 would reduce federal budget deficits by $338 billion between 2018 and 2027 relative to CBO’s most recent baseline. Other information about the policy’s effects on the budget, health insurance coverage, and premiums will be included in today’s report.
The agencies are in the process of revising their methods to estimate the repeal of the individual mandate. However, because that work is not complete and significant changes to the individual mandate are now being considered as part of the budget reconciliation process, the agencies are publishing this update without incorporating major changes to their analytical methods.
The report was prepared in response to interest from Members of Congress. It updates a budget option published in December 2016 and is not based on specific legislative language.
Keith Hall is CBO’s Director.