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White House South Facade

White House South Facade

Everyone knows that an invitation to the White House by the President is more than an invitation.

Congressional Budget Office Director Douglas Elmendorf says that President Obama “invited” him to the White House on Monday to discuss the agency’s “views about…health reform,” according to the Director’s official blog.

Last week’s report by the CBO in a letter to the co-chairs of the Senate Committee on the Budget said that “rising costs for health care will cause federal spending to grow much faster than the economy” and it warned that Obama’s health reform, in its current form, would become “an unsustainable path.”

The CBO is an independent agency which is charged with providing Congress with the nitty-gritty, the economic impact, of government spending.  As a result of the CBO’s assessment of the current health-care legislation, many in Washington, including some Democrats, are now questioning the reform bill which could run into the trillions within a decade.

Director Elmendorf didn’t give much detail in his blog about what was covered in his meeting with Obama, Administration advisors, and others at the White House but he did say that the event didn’t go to his head.  “Of course, the setting of the conversation and the nature of the participants do not affect CBO’s analysis of health reform legislation,” Elmendorf said in his blog.  Saying that he essentially reiterated to the president the same information which he provided to Congress, Elmendorf said that he “will continue to work with Members of Congress and their staffs, on both sides of the aisle, to provide cost estimates and other information as health reform legislation is considered.”