Increasing Age for Medicare Eligibility Appears Off
the Table for White House
Democrat Sen. Dick Durbin says he got the info from
the White House; major issue for House leader Nancy Pelosi; hot button
Dec. 13, 2012 - There is good news for baby boomers
pressing age 65 - the Associated Press is reporting that an increase in
the age for Medicare eligibility is no longer being considered by the
Democrats as an option in negotiations with Republicans on avoiding the
The source was Illinois Democrat, Sen. Dick Durbin,
who told reporters that he did not get the information directly from the
president or the White House. But he is regularly apprised of the status
of negotiations. (AP
story by Andrew Taylor)
"I was told it's not on the table from the White
House," Durbin said. "Now that remains to be seen."
The eligibility age has been a hot button issue for
Republicans focused on cuts to the entitlement programs - Medicare and
Wall Street Journal reported this morning that the prospect of cuts
to Medicare and other entitlement programs is making many Democrats
anxious. Of particular concern is Republicans' call for increasing the
eligibility age for Medicare from 65 to 67, an idea that could split
Although, House Democrats are lining up behind
Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) against raising Medicare's
eligibility age as part of a year-end tax-and-spending package,
according to a report this morning in
Pelosi rejected raising Medicare's eligibility age
in an op-ed published Tuesday in USA Today, then doubled down on that
position Wednesday. "We want what happens to be fair," she said in an
interview on CBS's "This Morning" program. "And one of the things that
we object to is raising the Medicare age" (Lillis, 12/12).
The AP story also reports that Durbin's remarks
came as a frustrated House Speaker John Boehner again accused President
Barack Obama of dragging out negotiations on any agreement to avoid a
"fiscal cliff" of wide-ranging tax increases and spending cuts that will
automatically be triggered in less than three weeks. The two sides
appear far apart, and Boehner is scheduled to return home to Ohio on
Friday, his office confirmed, though he remains available for
negotiations by phone.
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