Veronique, thanks for pointing to that Dalrymple article. It’s an important point, since comparisons of the Ryan and Obama approaches generally assume that, the problem of rationing by unelected committee aside, IPAB will at least save us from financial disaster. If it won’t even do that, then Obama’s plan may not even be a viable alternative to vouchers. But of course, there is no Obama plan. As soon as you begin to ask exactly how IPAB will actually work on the scale Obama needs it to work to tame the deficit, you get into some very scary stuff. Thus Obama’s vagueness.
That’s why House Ways and Means Committee chairman, Dave Camp, and House Energy and Commerce Committee chairman, Fred Upton have just sent a letter to President Obama asking him to specify the ways in which IPAB will yield the promised savings. They also want Obama to specify the ways in which he means to “strengthen” IPAB’s authority. So the GOP does seem to be waking up to the need to ensure that IPAB is every bit as much a focus of debate as the Ryan plan.