One of the key issues with health care legislation is the cost, which varies depending on who you ask.

U.S. Representative Ron Kind, a Democrat from La Crosse, says the bill is not only paid for, but will actually reduce the deficit. “It was fiscally responsible according to the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office.”

Kind tells reporters on a conference call, the CBO scored savings of over $140 billion in the first 10 years of enactment and an additional $1.2 trillion worth of savings in the second ten years.

Not so, says U.S. Representative Paul Ryan, a Republican from Janesville, who calls the bill a “fiscal Frankenstein,” on the House floor. “This bill is the mother of all unfunded mandates.”

Ryan says the bill double counts billions of dollars. He, too, cites the CBO, saying the health care bill will leave us with a $662 billion deficit.

Kind says everyone agreed that the CBO is the arbitrator to analyze the bill and its budget impact.

“Merely because the CBO comes back with numbers that don’t agree with you, it doesn’t, I think, give you the right to basically attack those numbers.”

But how can the very same numbers show different outcomes? Ryan answers that question.

“I think we’re gonna hear long today how this bill reduces the deficit according to the CBO. Well I would simply say the oldest trick in the book in Washington is you can manipulate a piece of legislation to manipulate the final score that comes out.”

Kind says the CBO is very strict in their analysis, which doesn’t account for future savings. Kind says when you consider preventive care, wellness, and incentive programs, there will be even more savings than what the CBO is giving credit for.

President Obama is expected to sign the $940-billion bill Tuesday.

Jackie Johnson report 1:50


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