Medicare policies continue to claim campaign trail attention

Published on September 15, 2012 at 6:54 AM · No Comments

The presidential and vice presidential candidates compare and contrast their plans, and some fact checkers set to work on sorting out what they are saying.

Politico: Obama: Best Medicare Solution Is 'Smarter' Health Care
President Barack Obama said Thursday that the right way to cut Medicare spending is by making health care "smarter" -; not by shifting costs to seniors, as he claims the Mitt Romney-Paul Ryan Medicare plan would do. Campaigning in Golden, Colo., Obama said the best way to get Medicare savings is to cut out wasteful health care spending. In a more efficient health care system, "instead of five tests you get one test, and it's emailed everywhere," Obama said (Nather, 9/13).

The Washington Post's The Fact Checker: Romney's Medicare Remarks: Would He Pass Costs On To Seniors Or Not?
GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney faced questions about his policy proposals during an interview that aired Sunday on NBC's "Meet the Press."… The Ryan plan would eventually cap government payments toward Medicare and provide future generations of seniors with premium-support payments …  to purchase coverage through traditional Medicare or on the private market. (David) Gregory asked Romney: "If competitive bidding in Medicare fails to bring down prices, you have a choice of either passing that cost on to seniors or blowing up the deficit. What would you do?" … Romney pointed to Medicare Advantage and Medicare Part D as proof that competitive bidding works to bring down costs. Let's look at how those entitlement programs impact federal spending and determine how much they really compare to the Ryan plan (Hicks, 9/13).

The Wall Street Journal's Washington Wire: Obama, Ryan Plan To Address AARP
Questions about Medicare and Social Security will be front and center in the presidential campaign next week when President Barack Obama and Republican vice presidential nominee Paul Ryan address the senior group AARP in back to back sessions on Sept. 21. Mr. Obama will speak via satellite, the group said (Meckler, 9/13).

The New York Times: Biden Hammers GOP Ticket's Domestic Policies
Mr. Biden attacked Mr. Ryan in particular, tying details from his House budget plan to Mitt Romney as he criticized the Republicans on education, tax cuts for the wealthy, Medicare and a refusal to compromise on debt reduction. Mr. Ryan's addition to the Republican ticket has raised the pressure on President Obama in Wisconsin, Mr. Ryan's home state, whose rightward tilt since 2010 already assured that it would not be the comfortable win Mr. Obama enjoyed four years ago. On Wednesday, Mr. Obama unveiled his first television advertisements in the state (Gabriel, 9/13).

Meanwhile, Democrats are focusing on the health law as a motivator for fundraising.

The Hill: Dems Raise Funds To 'Protect ObamaCare'
Democrats are hoping to draw on support for President Obama's healthcare law as they fundraise for November. In an email to supporters Thursday, the Obama Victory Fund 2012 asked for donations using an appeal from Stacey Lihn, the mother of a child with a heart defect. Lihn also spoke at the Democratic National Convention earlier this month -; an event that conspicuously embraced the Affordable Care Act. "When you have a sick child, you have to constantly worry about so many things. For me, one of them is whether an insurance company can take away my daughter's health coverage," Lihn wrote in Thursday's email (Viebeck, 9/13).


http://www.kaiserhealthnews.orgThis article was reprinted from kaiserhealthnews.org with permission from the Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation. Kaiser Health News, an editorially independent news service, is a program of the Kaiser Family Foundation, a nonpartisan health care policy research organization unaffiliated with Kaiser Permanente.

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