U.S. Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX) departs after remarks on the Senate floor as the body prepared to conduct a series of federal budget spending votes at the U.S. Capitol in Washington September 27, 2013. The U.S. government braced on Friday for the possibility
At least he's still got his mailing list.

Remember how Ted Cruz and House Republicans shut down the government for 16 days and took the nation to the brink of default because they wanted to kill Obamacare? Well, they didn't quite get that accomplished, and the one Obamacare concession they did get—income verification—is, well, pretty much meaningless.
[T]he deal basically requires two submitted reports in the course of the next year. Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius is due to submit the first report by Jan. 1, which must detail "the procedures employed by American Health Benefit Exchanges to verify eligibility for credits and cost-sharing reductions described in subsection."

Six months later, the HHS inspector general is required to submit a report "regarding the effectiveness of the procedures and safeguards provided under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act for preventing the submission of inaccurate or fraudulent information by applicants."

That's it. That's what Republicans "won" on Obamacare. A handful of staff at HHS will have to spend several hours every few months compiling reports. But Republicans should take heart. This will cost taxpayers a whole lot less than the plan they originally had in mind to scrutinize and double-scrutinize the financial status of every single applicant (because Freedom!). There's a compromise that's good for the deficit. Because that's what they care most about, right?

Originally posted to Joan McCarter on Thu Oct 17, 2013 at 09:41 AM PDT.

Also republished by Daily Kos.

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