Sep 11, 2012
NRCC MISFIRES: Attacks Republican Members of Congress, Distorts Truth
Whoops. In new television ads launched today, the National Republican Congressional Committee attacks Democrats for supporting the same Medicare reforms that nearly all Republicans voted for as well. As President Clinton said last week, "It takes some brass to attack a guy for doing what you did."
The NRCC attacks Democrats for supporting $716 billion in “cuts to Medicare” as part of the Affordable Care Act but doesn’t note that nearly every Republican Members of Congress voted for those exact same reforms as part of the Ryan budget.
Not only did the NRCC essentially attack its own members by doing this, but the underlying attack isn’t even true. As President Bill Clinton explained, the $716 billion Republicans reference “cut unwarranted subsidies to insurance companies. There were no cuts to benefits at all. None.” As Politifact and Factcheck.org noted, these reforms do not cut Medicare benefits.
While both Republicans and Democrats supported these savings in their votes for the Ryan Budget and Affordable Care Act respectively, only the Ryan budget turns Medicare into a voucher and, according to the non-partisan Congressional Budget Office, would raise health care costs for seniors by $6,400 a year.
Bloomberg: The Affordable Care Act Does Not Cut Medicare Benefits. “The 2010 Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act that Obama pushed for doesn’t cut Medicare; it simply reduces projected future increases in costs by $700 billion over 10 years.” [Bloomberg, 8/13/12]
- PolitiFact Called the Claim that Democrats Cut Medicare by $700 Billion a “Pants on Fire” Lie. In a series of news releases dealing with the national health care reform law, the National Republican Congressional Committee claimed 37 House Democrats were “willing to jeopardize seniors’ access to coverage by gutting $741 billion from Medicare” to pay for a “big-government healthcare takeover.” PolitiFact wrote “There’s only one ruling for such heated and misleading claims: Pants on Fire!” [PolitiFact, 8/19/12]
- PolitiFact: The Affordable Care Act Does Not Cut Current Medicare Benefits. As PolitFact noted, “The bill doesn't take money out of the current Medicare budget but, rather, it attempts to slow the program's future growth, curtailing just over $500 billion in anticipated spending increases over the next 10 years.” [PolitiFact.com, 9/12/11]
- FactCheck.Org: The Affordable Care Act Does Not Cut Current Medicare Benefits. FactCheck.org has written “time and again” how “misleading” the charge is. “The law calls for $555 billion in cuts in future growth of the program – over 10 years. The total projected cost of Medicare over that time, according to the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office, is $7.1 trillion, even with the cuts.” [FactCheck.org, 9/17/10]
Republicans Voted for Kept The Same Medicare Savings. House Republicans “voted for the same Medicare cuts as president Obama’s health plan known as ObamaCare. Under the 2011 Ryan plan bill approved by nearly every House Republican, ObamaCare would have been repealed almost entirely – except when it came to the Medicare reductions in future reimbursement rates to hospitals and drug and insurance companies. So Medicare’s bottom-line spending would have been about the same under ObamaCare or under what some are now calling RyanCare.” [Miami Herald, 8/13/12]
- “House Republicans have voted twice since 2010 for the same 10-year, $500 billion savings in supporting Mr. Ryan’s annual budgets.” [New York Times, 7/7/12]
- Similarly, Bloomberg News recently reported: “Republicans assume the same savings in their own budget blueprint crafted by House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan.” [Bloomberg News, 6/28/12]
- In fact, Republican Congressman David McKinley of West Virginia, who voted against the Republican budget that Congresswoman Buerkle supported, sent a mailer to constituents recently that: “makes a point that […] The same cuts they are blasting in some of their most potent attack ads are retained in the Ryan plan they voted on.” [New York Times, 6/22/12]
Republicans Voted to End Traditional Medicare. “Ryan’s budget bill also would end traditional Medicare by capping spending and offer vouchers to buy private insurance.” [Bloomberg, 8/13/12]