Politics Heat Up In Response to GOP Budget's
Medicare, Medicaid Proposals
Newspapers: 'politically risk', 'little chance',
'converts Medicare to premium support program', 'you'll need to pay a
April 5, 2011 - The blueprint advanced today by
House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan, R-Wis., would attempt to rein
in the long-term costs of Medicare and Medicaid while squeezing $6.2
trillion dollars from the nation's deficit over the next 10 years.
Newspapers seem to see a frisky political battle ahead judging from
Reuters: “politically risky overhaul of government-run health
"U.S. Republicans on Tuesday proposed $6 trillion
in spending cuts over a decade, including a politically risky overhaul
of government-run health programs, while also slashing tax rates as part
of their 2012 budget blueprint. The budget proposal comes as Congress
and President Barack Obama are arguing over the 2011 budget -- six
months into the fiscal year -- and trying to avoid a government shutdown
Friday when money runs out" (Sullivan, 4/5).
Kaiser Health News
from the GOP "Path To Prosperity" regarding its Medicare and
Medicaid provisions, as well as links to the complete GOP budget
document, summary information, comparison tables and President
Obama's 2012 budget for the Department of Health and Human
Services. KHN also has a
resource page with proposals and other information on
curbing Medicare cost growth.
"The budget proposal stands little chance of
becoming law, since it would have to be approved by the
Democratic-controlled Senate and signed by Mr. Obama, and, among other
things, it would repeal Mr. Obama's signature health-care law. It would
make fundamental changes to Medicare and Medicaid and reduce spending on
the government health-insurance programs. ... Democrats, based on early
reports of the budget's contents, portrayed it as an extreme document,
dedicated to dismantling the protections government has provided the
lower- and middle-class for decades, while declining to make businesses
pay their fair share" (Bendavid, 4/5).
"House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan, R-Wis.,
left many details to Congress when he unveiled Tuesday his plan to make
major changes to Medicare as part of a fiscal 2012 budget resolution. He
says his overall objective is to convert Medicare into a premium support
program for which the government will spend a specific amount for
beneficiaries' care, a fundamental shift from the current
fee-for-service program. Backers of premium support say it is similar to
the health insurance program for federal workers but others say it may
not meet seniors’ needs. Insurers are eager for the additional business
but wonder if payments will be adequate to cover the cost of
MSNBC: “You’ll need to pay a bigger share of the cost of your
"Over age 54? You needn’t worry about the proposal
[Ryan] unveiled Tuesday for a redesign of Medicare. Under age 54? You’ll
need to pay a bigger share of the cost of your medical care once you’re
retired. Ryan’s remake of Medicare would save as much as $285 billion a
year by 2030, and would mean less federal spending on medical care in
future decades for today’s workers and their children" (Curry, 4/5).
The New York Times: "Congress and the White House veered toward a
fiscal collision on Tuesday as the Obama administration rejected a
short-term House Republican demand to cut $12 billion now in exchange
for keeping the government open for one more week. At the same time, the
Republicans' budget chairman set forth a longer-range blueprint defining
a new era of profoundly smaller government. ... Republicans made clear
they had no intention of backing down on more cuts in current year
spending and would frame the fight over next year's budget in similar
terms. Their long-term proposal also included changes in mandatory
entitlement programs like Medicare and Medicaid. ... Representative
Chris Van Hollen, ranking Democrat on the House Budget Committee, called
it a 'rigid ideological agenda that extends tax cuts to the rich and
powerful at the expense of the rest of America'" (Steinhauer and Hulse,
MarketWatch: "By presenting a plan to lock in spending cuts, replace
Obama's health-care law and allow new Medicare beneficiaries to choose
private plans, Republicans say they're leading where the president has
failed... Democrats attacked the Ryan plan in a preview of the policy
tug-of-wars to come. 'The American people won't be fooled by your
rhetoric, Mr. Chairman. The GOP budget eliminates guaranteed benefits
for seniors under Medicare and slashes support for seniors, children,
and Americans with disabilities on Medicaid,' said a statement from
House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi's office" (Schroeder, 4/5).
Los Angeles Times: "The budget outlined by budget committee chairman
Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) takes considerable political risks --
particularly in its proposal to remake Medicare and Medicaid, the core
of the social safety net for the poor and elderly. But Ryan also passes
on other politically dicey solutions to reducing deficits and debt. His
plan all but dodges changes to Social Security, an area Ryan
acknowledged Tuesday was more ripe for bipartisan agreement. ... Ryan
freely admits he's taking a sizable gamble — and dragging his party
along with him — by going after entitlements, a proven American
political minefield" (Hennessey and Oliphant, 4/5).
CBS News Political Hotsheet: Ryan "is knowingly taking a big
political gamble by introducing a 2012 federal budget today that
proposes to dramatically transform Medicare and Medicaid. ... It's a
risky proposal politically, given Medicare's overwhelming popularity,
but Ryan and the GOP are prepared to argue the changes are necessary.
... [He] says his budget 'fixes the flaws in Medicare and Medicaid that
have made rising costs nearly impossible to check.' [But] liberal
economists like Dean Baker argue that Ryan's plan 'does nothing to
address our broken health care system while virtually guaranteeing that
most seniors will not be able to afford decent health care'" (Condon,
The Washington Post: Democrats responded. "'Behind the sunny
rhetoric of reform,' Rep. Chris Van Hollen (D-Md.), the senior Democrat
on the House Budget Committee, said in a statement, 'the Republican
budget represents the rigid ideological agenda that extends tax cuts to
the rich and powerful at the expense of the rest of America.' ...
However, Republicans emerging from a morning meeting with House leaders
Tuesday said they were united behind the Ryan plan. They argued that
voters sent Republicans to Washington to rein in spending, even if that
means cutting cherished programs for the poor and the elderly"
(Montgomery and Rucker, 4/5).
McClatchy/Miami Herald: "[Ryan's] committee will begin writing
legislation Wednesday to incorporate his ideas, and the full House is
expected to consider his proposal next week. But its prospects are dim
in the Democratic-controlled Senate, and as details have trickled out,
Democrats and liberal interest groups have blasted the blueprint"
(Douglas and Lightman, 4/5).
USA Today On Politics: " [I]n an e-mail this morning, House Minority
Leader Nancy Pelosi's office says the GOP's 'rhetoric doesn't match
reality.' The Democratic leader contends the 'paths' as outlined by Ryan
will eliminate guaranteed benefits for seniors on Medicare, reduce
support for low-income people and those with disabilities on Medicaid,
and cut education benefits (Camia, 4/5).
Politico: "Republicans are betting ... that there is finally enough
public support for general deficit reduction — thanks to voters’ alarm
over the surge in federal spending of the last few years — that they’ll
be able to shield themselves from any backlash over cuts in the major
federal health programs" Nather, 4/5).
Below is a summary of news coverage prior to the
You may be eligible for money damages if you owned or leased one of these VW, Porsche or Audi vehicles.
In the major scandal of 2015, Volkswagen cheated you and the world. They rigged diesel emission controls so you, nor regulators, would know how much pollution their cars were adding to our environment.
They were caught and have reserved $7.3 billion to help "make it right" with victims.
If you owned or leased one of these vehicles, contact us now.
Janicek Law attorneys are actively pursuing these cases against VW. Do Not Wait...