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Group suggest House Republicans voted to end Medicare


JUNE 2011 Scranton/Wilkes-Barre/Hazleton edition of The Union News

Group suggest House Republicans voted to end Medicare

REGION, June 2nd- According to the pro-labor and left-leaning political organization, the “Americans United for Change” in Washington, DC, Republicans in Congress have shown their hypocrisy and dishonesty by supporting legislation that would gut Medicare.

On April 15th, the majority of the Republican members of Congress voted for a radical budget plan that seeks to essentially end Medicare by replacing it with a system of a shrinking private insurance vouchers while at the same time voting to dole-out over $4 trillion in new tax breaks for millionaires, oil companies, and corporations that outsource jobs.

The Americans United for Change stated it is understandable that Republicans in Congress would want to wipe the slate clean when it comes to Medicare after many of them joined in the most well-coordinated, well funded misinformation campaign during the 2010 election. The organization stated seniors were proposely misled into believing that their Medicare benefits would be cut under President Obama’s new healthcare law. Ignoring the conclusions to the contrary at the time from independent fact checkers and the AARP.

The Economic Policy Institute in Washington, DC, summarized before the health care reform act became law that Medicare Advantage plans are private plans funded through Medicare to provide similar benefits, but at a 14 percent higher cost on average. According to the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission, an independent Congressional agency, eliminating these overpayments would free up $157 billion over 10 years, a substantial down payment on health care reform.

By eliminating these wasteful subsides to the private insurance industry, Not only did the health law strengthen Medicare’s solvency by 12 years and not only do Medicare beneficiaries still have all the same guaranteed benefits they always had, but seniors now have new benefits like free preventive care services and tens of thousands of enrollees who fall into the infamous Part D “donut hole” are saving an average of $800 per person because of the new 50 percent discount on covered brand-named drugs.

House Republicans voted to replace Medicare with a voucher system where seniors would be given a coupon and sent out into the private insurance market. The coupon would not keep up with the rising cost of health care and will leave seniors paying over $6,000 more out of pocket for care.

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