First on CNN: Republicans bring back Medicare attack
December 4th, 2013
05:00 AM ET
12 months ago

First on CNN: Republicans bring back Medicare attack

Updated 9:24 a.m. ET, 12/4/2013

Washington (CNN) – As President Obama and Democrats try to salvage the reputation of the Affordable Care Act, a national Republican group will hit 12 Democrats–all running in Senate elections next year–over changes to Medicare.

The National Republican Senatorial Committee will highlight Wednesday the candidates' support for the federal health care law, better known as Obamacare, and what Republicans call $717 billion in cuts to the popular entitlement program that guarantees health insurance to seniors.

Democrats defending the program, however, say the changes aren't cuts, but savings of projected costs of Medicare over the next 10 years.

The $717 billion figure comes from a Congressional Budget Office report that measured the impact of repealing the health care law. The figure was a big campaign issue during the 2012 presidential election.

The report says that under the repeal measure, "Spending for Medicare would increase by an estimated $716 billion over that 2013-2022 period." Those spending increases would be a result of more spending on hospital and medical insurance, offset by a decrease in prescription drug coverage.

The report also notes that the projected increase in Medicare spending if the measure is repealed does not signal a more-than $700 billion decrease if the measure stays in place.

But the NRSC will hammer the Democratic candidates in a news release for "deceiving seniors (by) using their old and discredited MediScare playbook."

The release will go out to states where the following candidates are either running to keep their Senate seats or running in open elections for the Senate: Sen. Mark Pryor, D-Arkansas; Sen. Mark Begich, D-Alaska; Sen. Kay Hagan, D-North Carolina; Mary Landrieu, D-Louisiana; Rep. Gary Peters, D-Michigan; Rep. Bruce Braley, D-Iowa; Sen. Mark Udall, D-Colorado; Sen. Tom Udall, D-New Mexico; Sen. Dick Durbin, D-Illinois; Sen. Jeanne Shaheen, D-New Hampshire; Sen. Jeff Merkley, D-Oregon; and Sen. Al Franken, D-Minnesota.

A spokesman from the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee responded to the attack on Wednesday, saying "Republicans all voted for the exact same measure they are attacking in the (Rep. Paul) Ryan budgets."

Ryan, who chairs the House Budget Committee, has put out budgets that included a plan to move Medicare to private insurance companies and give seniors voucher-like credits to choose between Medicare and a private company. That plan would also include more than $700 billion in cost savings, and it was passed by House Republicans.

"The fact is only Republican Senate candidates like Bill Cassidy in Louisiana, Thom Tillis in North Carolina, and Tom Cotton in Arkansas have advocated for dangerous plans that would actually cut Medicare benefits for seniors, and that is certainly to be a huge concern for voters in 2014," Matt Canter, deputy executive director for the DSCC, said in a statement.


Filed under: 2014 • Medicare • NRSC • Obamacare
soundoff (9 Responses)
  1. NATHAN WIMBERLY

    More Guns Over People tea potty domestic terrorist lies. They voted to turn Medicare into a voucher.

    December 4, 2013 05:54 am at 5:54 am |
  2. simplyput

    Obamacare is built to destroy Medicare, which is a personal attack on americans who have paid into the system. If he has his way, Medicare will fall like the Union pensions in Detroit and Chicago. It's all going down, folks. Hope you saw Obama 2016, because it's all happening right before your eyes.

    December 4, 2013 06:49 am at 6:49 am |
  3. Gurgyl

    Reduce all Medicare reimbursements. Pathetic GOP and their nasty idiocy. They need to chew something or other.

    December 4, 2013 06:58 am at 6:58 am |
  4. Democrats,Obama bad for America.

    We need to do whatever we can to vote these Democrats out of office. Its time to give the goverment back to the people.Republicans are the best chance we have, unlike Democrats and Obama who are bent on destroying this great nation. Democrats do not care for the people, they only care for themselves.

    December 4, 2013 07:04 am at 7:04 am |
  5. jinx9to88

    Here we go again, again, and again. Is this same cuts the Paul Ryan had in his budget deal 2 years ago? GOP must have forgot about that part. GOP are acting like little kids, if you won't play their way they are gonna take the ball and go home.

    December 4, 2013 07:19 am at 7:19 am |
  6. TomInRochNY

    "deceiving seniors (by) using their old and discredited MediScare playbook."

    So, the ACA is saving $717B and the Rs are passing it off as a cut. Then they dare to claim the Ds are deceiving people?

    December 4, 2013 07:34 am at 7:34 am |
  7. current state of the union

    You don't want to know how bad your life gets with Republicans in charge of both house and senates

    December 4, 2013 07:35 am at 7:35 am |
  8. Lynda/Minnesota

    "But the NRSC will hammer the Democratic candidates in a news release for "deceiving seniors (by) using their old and discredited MediScare playbook."

    Yes, well. Considered a senior citizen myself, nothing makes me more angry than being used as a political party scare stooge pawn.

    That being said, most "seniors" are much more political savvy than Republicans give us credit for being. Then again, anyone willing enough to "scare" our seniors with falsehoods, innuendo, and out right lies (yes I include the media) is morally bankrupt and quite "dirty" to begin with.

    As taken from the article ... "and what Republicans call $717 billion in cuts to the popular entitlement program that guarantees health insurance to seniors."

    Let's take the "And what Republicans might ..." phrase. CNN attempts to try and distance itself from what CNN understands is a NOT truth filled comment by suggesting that this is a "Republican" talking point ... and yet, CNN WILL willingly run with said comment knowing full well it isn't based certifiable facts.

    And for what purpose would CNN willingly lend a hand to "scaring" seniors into thinking they will be losing their benefits because of "Obamacare" ... when CNN absolutely knows this to be a false narrative to begin with?

    December 4, 2013 07:42 am at 7:42 am |
  9. Logictox

    I hope this horrible legislation kicks the democrats to the curb for what they have done to our health care.

    December 4, 2013 07:48 am at 7:48 am |