Congressional leaders plan to make the most of this election-year Medicare debate

Published on August 17, 2012 at 7:16 AM · No Comments

House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, urged his fellow Republicans to "play offense" on the issue while their Democratic counterparts plan to keep the heat on.    

The Associated Press/Washington Post: Boehner Urges House GOP To Go On Offense Over Medicare Issue
Speaker John Boehner is urging rank-and-file House Republicans to go on offense over Medicare as Democrats argue that the GOP presidential ticket of Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan would end the government-run health care program that seniors have embraced for decades (8/16).

The Hill: Boehner Tells GOP It Can Play Offense On Medicare With Ryan On The Ticket
Speaker John Boehner insisted Republicans can "play offense" on Medicare with Rep. Paul Ryan as the party's vice-presidential candidate during a during a Tuesday night conference call with House Republicans. Boehner (R-Ohio) told his conference that Republicans were going to be attacked on Medicare regardless of Ryan's selection, according to a source familiar with the routine weekly call with leadership and rank-and-file. "The pundits are buzzing that with Paul on the ticket, the Democrats are going to attack us on Medicare. Well, here's a news flash: they were gonna do that anyway," Boehner told House Republicans on the call, according to a source familiar with the conversation (Hooper, 8/15).

Reuters: Republicans Gambling In Taking Medicare Issue Head-On
Faced with Democratic Party assaults on vice presidential candidate Paul Ryan's Medicare plan, Republicans have made the political calculation that a counter-attack can preserve support among senior citizens who could sway the November election's outcome. "Democrats are asking for it," Mike Shields, political director at the National Republican Congressional Committee, said in a memo to party operatives on Monday, just days after presidential hopeful Mitt Romney announced Ryan as his running mate (Morgan, 8/15).

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