Wednesday, September 21, 2011

More Reactions To President, Cuts for Medicare, Uncertain Progressives

Support for the President

From the Medicare Rights Center:  "The president's dedication to a balanced approach to deficit reduction, which includes significant revenue increases through mechanisms such as ending tax breaks for the wealthiest Americans and corporations, helps protect programs like Medicare and Medicaid.  While proposals that will increase costs for future Medicare beneficiaries in 2017 and beyond must be further analyzed, proposals that attack the root cause of growing costs in Medicare and Medicaid -- growing costs in the health care sector overall -- are the right approach to strengthening these programs’ finances."

Opposition to the President

"Democrats are hitting back at Republicans who say President Obama's plan to increase taxes on millionaires and billionaires amounts to 'class warfare, arguing that the GOP is the party that has been protecting the interests of a particular class -- the wealthiest Americans."   "Republicans quickly responded to the plan by calling it 'class warfare' -- a term used by Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wis.), Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) and House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio)."

"Obama has responded to the Republicans' 'class warfare' comments by saying, 'Either we have to ask the wealthy to pay their fair share, or we have to ask seniors to pay more for medicare [sic], or gut education.  This is not class warfare. It's math.'"

Smart Cuts for Medicare

"In his plan to trim the federal deficit, President Barack Obama Monday proposed $320 billion in cuts to Medicare and Medicaid, largely by changing how the federal government pays health providers, slashing payments to drug companies, and dramatically changing the way it splits the costs of Medicaid with the states, according to a fact sheet the White House released."

"The biggest cut to Medicare requires pharmaceutical companies to lower their rates.  The proposal would save Medicare an estimated $135 billion over 10 years starting in 2013.  The change would allow the federal government to receive the same brand name and generic rebates for low-income Medicare patients as are provided to Medicaid beneficiaries. "

This is an approach that could work.  If only compromise or good sense could prevail.

Progressives in Quandary

"Hours after Obama delivered a fiery speech demanding that the wealthiest Americans 'pay their fair share' in taxes as part of his $4 trillion deficit-reduction plan, launched a new television ad on Monday hammering in the president's message and ripping Republicans for caring more about the rich than the middle class."

"But while progressives may be basking in Obama's latest return to a populist tone, many are still apprehensive about another piece of his vision for deficit reduction: potential cuts to Social Security, Medicare or Medicaid benefits.  In his same speech, the president advocated making 'structural reforms' to entitlement programs."

I'm sure the Conservative Republicans are very happy that Progressives and Liberals are having problems making a commitment to President Obama.

The Republican Reality-Free Zone

The Republican Let's-Stick-Together Zone


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