Learn more about James Capretta

James C. Capretta is a Senior Fellow at the Ethics and Public Policy Center and a Visiting Fellow at the American Enterprise Institute.

He studies and provides commentary on a wide range of public policy and economic issues, with a focus on health-care and entitlement reform, and U.S. fiscal policy.


Mr. Capretta served for nearly sixteen years in senior positions in the executive and legislative branches of the federal government. From 2001 to 2004, he served as an Associate Director at the White House Office of Management and Budget (OMB), where he had responsibility for Medicare, Medicaid, Social Security, education, and welfare programs. Earlier, he spent a decade at the Senate Budget Committee as a senior analyst for health care and entitlement policy.


Mr. Capretta’s articles and essays have appeared in a large number of print and online publications.


Recent Posts by James Capretta

A Market-Based Contingency Plan for King v. Burwell

If the Supreme Court rules in favor of the plaintiffs in the King v. Burwell case, Congress will have the opportunity to advance health-care policies that expand consumer choice, increase coverage, deliver better value for the dollar, and allow state governments more say over health care policy.

Unpacking The Burr-Hatch-Upton Plan

Anticipating the upcoming Supreme Court decision on King v. Burwell, which could halt health insurance subsidies available through the federal exchange, Republican Senators Richard Burr and Orrin Hatch joined with Representative Fred Upton to propose a comprehensive replacement for the...

Health Care Policy After The Mid-Term Elections

As President Obama said in his post-election news conference, Republicans had a good night on November 4. They increased their majority in the House to a level not seen since the 1920s and may hold as many as 250 seats in the lower chamber. In the Senate, Republicans defeated at least three...

An Emerging Consensus: Medicare Advantage Is Working And Can Deliver Meaningful Reform

Since enactment of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) in 2010, much of the attention in the policy community has been on modernizing Medicare’s traditional fee-for-service (FFS) program.  Through Accountable Care Organizations (ACOs), larger “bundles” of payments to fee-for-service providers for...

A Health Reform Framework: Breaking Out Of The Medicaid Model

Editor's note: This post is coauthored by Joseph Antos and James Capretta. A primary aim of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) is to expand insurance coverage, especially among households with lower incomes. The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) projects that about...

A Senate GOP Health Reform Proposal: The Burr-Coburn-Hatch Plan

Republican Senators Richard Burr, Tom Coburn, and Orrin Hatch recently released a blueprint for repealing and replacing Obamacare, called the Patient Choice, Affordability, Responsibility, and Empowerment Act, or the Patient CARE Act (PCA). The plan is getting significant attention from...

CBO’s Long-Term Budget Projections: The Outlook Is Even Worse Than It Looks

The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) issued its annual update to its long-term budget projections last month. As usual, the report is chock full of useful insights about the state of the nation’s medium and long-term fiscal position, the implications of the budget outlook for the national...

Health Policy After The Election

In the short time that has passed since the election, there have been numerous pronouncements that the struggle over the future of American health care is now more or less settled. And it is certainly true that, over the next four years, full-scale repeal and replacement of the Patient...

Super Committee Post-Mortem: Health Care Policy Is Central To Partisan Budget Divide

The Joint Select Committee on Deficit Reduction wasn’t dubbed the “super committee” for nothing. In theory at least, it had immense and unprecedented power.  If the select committee had been able to produce a consensus plan on deficit reduction, that legislation would have been guaranteed an up...

Changing The Name — But Not The Political Game

Editor’s Note: Yesterday, the Obama administration announced interim final regulations governing the temporary Pre-Existing Condition Insurance Plan created by the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. Below, Thomas Miller and James Capretta criticize this portion of the Act and the...