Gene Sperling: Senate-Passed Amnesty Bill Would Reduce Long Term Deficit

The Left is pretty good at staying on message, which is what Gene Sperling, a top economic adviser to President Obama, did recently as he made a pitch for comprehensive immigration reform, arguing that it would reduce the deficit in the long term.  In fact, he called it one of the “most promising” things we could do to reduce the deficit.

But staying on message doesn’t make the message true.

Millions of Americans are learning that the hard way as they get letters from their insurance companies telling them their health plans have been canceled due to Obamacare – despite years of President Obama promising, “If you like your health care plan, you will be able to keep your health care plan. Period.

Sperling, the National Economic Council Director and Assistant to the President for Economic Policy, went to great lengths to promote the Senate’s amnesty bill in the most emphatic terms:

The CBO has scored the immigration bill as reducing the deficit, by almost $900 billion over the next 20 years.  So if you’re asking yourself right now, what is one of the most promising, bipartisan things we can do to reduce the long term deficit you should be supporting and actively fighting for passage of the comprehensive immigration reform that passed in the United States Senate.

The Heritage Foundation has refuted the false claim that the Senate-passed bill would reduce the deficit:

FACT: It would explode the deficit.

While a properly functioning immigration system could indeed help reduce the deficit and grow the economy, the amnesty portion of the Senate bill would be extremely costly for American taxpayers, particularly in the long run. 

The White House ignores the fact that amnesty would make 11. 5 million illegal immigrants eligible for Social Security, Medicare, Obamacare, and more than 80 different means-tested welfare programs like food stamps and public housing.

All of this will cost American taxpayers.  Under the Senate-passed amnesty bill, each current illegal immigrant would receive far more in benefits than they would pay in taxes.  Illegal immigrants who would be granted amnesty would each have a “net cost of more than $600,000 to taxpayers.”

The Left is quick to ignore this, but they treated Obamacare the same way.  Think of how often President Obama has asserted that Obamacare will reduce the deficit:

We’ve raised enough money to pay for providing health insurance for those who don’t have it through providing tax credits in the market place and at the same time, because we’re driving down costs, we actually end up saving a little money.  It is a net reduction of our deficit. The irony of those who are talking about repealing Obamacare because of it’s so wildly expensive is if they actually repealed the law, it would add to the deficit.

Liberals are eager to cite the CBO when it projects that President Obama’s liberal policies will reduce the deficit.  However, the CBO at times fails to make the right assumptions about how these policies will actually play out.  The Heritage Foundation explains that this very thing happened with Obamacare:

While Obamacare is technically scored by the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) as a deficit reducer, when rational assumptions are made and budget gimmicks are omitted, the law is far from paid for, likely increasing future budget deficits and further burdening current taxpayers and future generations.

Because of Obamacare’s massive Medicaid expansion and new government subsidies, taxpayers will have to dish out $1.8 trillion from 2014 to 2023.  President Obama and his Administration have been dishonest with the American people about the cost of Obamacare and the effect it will have on the deficit.

The truth is government spending on healthcare and entitlements is out of control, and Obamacare makes it worse.  If amnesty means paying for health care benefits and entitlements for 11.5 million newly legalized individuals throughout their lifetimes, a massive new burden would placed on American taxpayers, and it’s wishful thinking to suggest it would reduce the deficit.

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