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The Atlantic examines role of CBO in healthcare debate

The Congressional War on Expertise – The Congressional Budget Office is a controversial part of the health-care debate, but that just proves its importance.
“…The CBO is supposed to stay above the political fray, serving as an independent, nonpartisan source of analysis. Both teams must be able to trust the agency’s neutrality, or its work indeed becomes worthless. Of course, politicians being congenital whiners, the CBO takes its share of abuse. Not infrequently, the agency comes out with numbers that one or the other team dislikes. That team loudly trashes the numbers. Outrage is voiced, chests are thumped—then everybody hunkers down and the show grinds on. But when officials start taking issue, not with a particular analysis or particular staff members, but with the agency’s very purpose, it’s time to get nervous…”

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