Members of President Donald Trump’s administration attempted to pre-emptively discredit the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office over the weekend ― just before it’s expected to issue an official projection of how the Republican health care bill would affect the federal budget and insurance coverage.
On Sunday, the White House chief economic adviser, Gary Cohn, argued that CBO projections have been “meaningless” in the past because they said “many more people will be insured than are actually insured.” Mick Mulvaney, the White House budget director, even made the case that scoring big legislation like the GOP’s Obamacare repeal bill “isn’t the best use of [the CBO’s] time.”
But for the last several years, Trump himself has appeared to be a big fan of the CBO and its analysis. In fact, he frequently cited the office’s work in attacks against former President Barack Obama’s record on health care, jobs, the unemployment rate and the economy.
Here’s a sampling of some of Trump’s tweets citing CBO figures to criticize Obama:
Based on his advisers’ recent comments, Trump appears to be having a change of heart with respect to the CBO now that he’s president. Republicans are bracing for a report that will show millions of Americans losing health coverage under the plan that GOP leaders, and Trump himself, are championing as a replacement for the Affordable Care Act.
Trump’s opinion about government-issued statistics has been known to vary, seemingly depending on whether they favor him or not. After years of doubting official Bureau of Labor Statistics reports on the nation’s unemployment rate, Trump and his advisers cheered a strong jobs report on Friday ― the first complete report under his administration ― showing the nation added 235,000 jobs in February.
“[The jobs reports] may have been phony in the past, but it’s very real now,” White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer said on Friday.