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Bobbi Herzberg, Mercatus Center: The Attack of the Zombie Obamacare Death Panel

October 31, 2017

The Mercatus Center’s Bobbi Herzberg joins the show to talk about the Independent Payment Advisory Board, a forgotten part of the Affordable Care Act once referred to as “the death panels.”

Mercatus Center  Distinguished Senior Fellow Bobbi Herzberg joins the Heartland Daily Podcast, talking about “Failure to Launch: The Institutional Defects of the Independent Payment Advisory Board,” a newly published research paper examining the track record of the so-called “death panel” created by the Affordable Care Act.

Created by Obamacare, the Independent Payment Advisory Board (IPAB) was supposed to reduce the increasing growth of Medicare spending, set apart from the political process and staffed by experts. However, former President Barack Obama never appointed any members to run the board, congressional Republicans cut its funding, and almost everyone in Congress supports its elimination… but it still exists, at least on paper.

Both political parties have allowed IPAB to linger around, like a zombie agency delegated authority without any way to exercise that power. Herzberg says the board was doomed to failure from the start, inherently biased toward liberals’ vision of Medicare and against any conservative reforms its members might blunder.

Instead of allowing the board to just shamble around without a head, Herzberg says Congress should put IPAB out of its misery and eliminate it entirely, instead of just ignoring it and hoping it’ll go away on its own.
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Jesse Hathaway is the managing editor of Budget & Tax News, a publication of The Heartland Institute. @JesseinOH