Mar 23, 2012
NRCC Lies Again About Democrats & Medicare
The ‘do as I say, not as I do’ NRCC is at it again lying yet again about Democrats’ record to strengthen and improve Medicare in an attempt to distract from Republicans’ record of trying to end the Medicare guarantee to give tax breaks to billionaires and Big Oil.
Today, the NRCC went out with TV advertising and robo phone calls that falsely claim Democrats ‘decimate Medicare’ because they oppose the House Republicans’ budget to end Medicare. The NRCC also falsely claims that Republicans will ration seniors’ health care and leave seniors at risk.
Keep in mind, that this is the same Republican budget that contains the $500 billion in Medicare savings that Republicans’ falsely claim that Democrats cut $500 billion from Medicare. Not only has Politifact called the Republican claim false, Republicans themselves included those same Medicare cost savings in both the House Republican budgets they passed last year and Congressman Paul Ryan introduced this week.
The fact is that Democrats’ refuse to support Republicans’ plan to end Medicare, rather we support strengthening and reforming it.
Take a look at the facts for yourself:
Politifact & FactCheck.org Say Claim Democrats’ Ration Health Care is a Lie & Wrong
Politifact Called the Claim a “Pants on Fire” Lie. The Independent Payment Advisory Board established by the Affordable Care Act will not lead to rationing. According to PolitiFact, “Actually, the law specifically states that the board cannot ration care. The board doesn’t look at individual patients or deny individual treatments. Instead, it makes system-wide recommendations to rein in the future growth of Medicare spending, and it makes those recommendations within limited parameters. It also was created to stop runaway spending growth within the Medicare program itself, not to divert money to other budget items.” [PolitiFact, 3/15/12]
FactCheck.org: “Wrong” to Say There is Rationing in Health Care Reform. “But it’s wrong to say that the advisory board will ration care or that it will be run by bureaucrats…” [Factcheck.org, 5/06/11]
House Republicans Falsely Attack the Affordable Care Act for Cutting $500 Billion from Medicare
The Washington Post Called the Charge “Misleading.” On June 15, 2011, the Washington Post fact-checked the Republican claim that the Affordable Care Act cut $500 billion from Medicare. The newspaper found that the charge was “misleading.” As the Washington Post wrote, “The health care bill, as mentioned, actually puts Medicare on a more solid financial footing. Also, the health care law improved some benefits for seniors, such as making preventive care free and closing a gap in prescription drug coverage known as the ‘doughnut hole’ — improvements that the House Republican bill actually would repeal.” [Washington Post, 6/15/11]
PolitiFact Rated the Claim “False.” “Sometimes talking points are just so good that no matter how many times we point out they’re wrong, politicians keep using them again and again and again, broken-record style. Case in point: The Republican bit that some Democrat or another voted to cut a whopping $500 billion from Medicare by supporting President Obama’s Affordable Care Act.” [PolitiFact.com, 11/14/11]
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.” Similarly, 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.” [PolitiFact.com, 9/12/11; FactCheck.org, 9/17/10]
The Affordable Care Act Does Not Reduce Benefits, It Enhances Them. According to PolitiFact, “The health care law does not reduce benefits -- in fact, it enhances them.” As explained by Jonathan Oberlander, a health policy professor at the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill. “The Affordable Care Act improves the benefits in Medicare, in terms of prevention, in terms of filling in the donut hole in Medicare Part D for prescription drugs.” [PolitiFact.com, 12/12/11]
Hypocritically, 2012 House Republican Budget Kept the Medicare Savings from the Affordable Care Act in Place
House Republican’s FY 2012 Budget Kept The Same Medicare Savings. “Last fall, Republicans spent millions on TV ads attacking Democrats for cutting Medicare. Those cuts—which reduced reimbursements to drug companies, hospitals and insurance companies and totaled about $500 billion over 10 years […] This week, Rep. Paul Ryan, chairman of the House Budget Committee, released his budget proposal. […] But his plan keeps in place the Medicare reductions.” [Wall Street Journal, 4/6/11]
Paul Ryan Agrees, The House Republican Plan Maintains the ARA Savings. The House Republican budget keeps all the Medicare savings that the GOP ran against in 2010. “We retain the Medicare savings and instead of double counting the Medicare savings,” said House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan. “We end the raid of the Medicare program and we reapply those savings to Medicare to advance its solvency. Doing that, combined with eliminating all the Obama health care spending gets you the numbers I’m talking about.” [Washington Post, 4/6/11]
House Republican Budget Included The Same Medicare Savings Included in the Affordable Care Act. “In a postelection reversal, House Republicans are supporting nearly $450 billion in Medicare cuts that they criticized vigorously last fall after Democrats and President Barack Obama passed them as part of their controversial health care law. The cuts are included in the 2012 budget that Rep. Paul Ryan, R-Wis., unveiled last week and account for a significant share of the $5.8 trillion in claimed savings over the next decade. The House is expected to vote on the blueprint this week.” [Associated Press, 4/13/11]
House Republican Budget Includes Most of the Same Medicare Savings. “The cuts in the Affordable Care Act hit the providers and producers of health care more than the consumers, at least directly, and include changes to the delivery of medical care that will, with any luck, make it possible for people to get better, more efficient health care even as it costs less. The Republican budget actually includes most of these same cuts for the first ten years, but then puts almost the entire onus for cost-cutting on individual beneficiaries via the vouchers.” [The New Republic, 5/4/11]
House Republicans Voted for the Same Medicare Savings. “Ryan's budget calls for repealing most of the Affordable Care Act, including both the insurance coverage expansions and creation of an independent board to help restrain Medicare costs. But it would leave in place the rest of the planned reductions in Medicare spending, at least for the next ten years. Among those cuts are $136 billion in reductions to Medicare Advantage plans.” [The New Republic, 4/15/11]