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Reuters: Repubs.May Cut Up to $28 Billion in Medicare If Tax Bill Passes

Republicans voters are so clueless and gullible. They actually believe tax cuts for the wealthy will trickle down to them, that Medicare is an entitlement program. They also don't care that their leaders talk out of both sides of their mouths.

Paul Ryan has been determined to cut Medicare for years. It's his pet issue. He's now salivating at the prospect of achieving his dream.

Reuters reports that on Wednesday Paul Ryan said he has started convincing Trump changes to Medicare are needed. Trump said early in 2018, they will tackle "welfare reform". Trump supporters thinks that means food stamps and are all for it.

[More...]

In Republican parlance, “entitlement” programs mean food stamps, housing assistance, Medicare and Medicaid health insurance for the elderly, poor and disabled, as well as other programs created to assist the needy.

How it will work: Reductions on taxes for corporations and the wealthy will raise the federal budget deficit and U.S. debt by about $1 trillion over 10 years. To pay for that, a Congressional budget rule requires cuts to mandatory spending programs like Medicare (Social Security and food stamps are exempt):

Enacting the tax bill would trigger automatic cuts to a variety of programs, including Medicare, due to a congressional budget rule that requires laws that increase the deficit to offset it with cuts to mandatory spending programs.

The “pay-as-you-go” rule applies to the Medicare health insurance program for the elderly and disabled, but cuts to that program would be capped at 4 percent, or up to $28 billion in 2018, according to government estimates.

Also exempt from the cuts are Medicaid, food stamps and other programs for the poor. In order to avoid Medicare cuts:

Congress must pass separate legislation to override automatic Medicare cuts triggered by passage of the tax bill.

Ryan has actually been talking to Trump about this since 2016. Here's a video of him saying so.

This is the tax bill from hell. It does not help small business. It helps the wealthiest among us, including huge corporations, and will hurt sole proprietors and small businesses by taking away their ability to itemize expenses.

When will clueless Republicans wake up and realize they are supporting a tax bill that starves their own Grandmas?

Ryan will come up with some bullsh*t "stimulus" program that is larded with tax-cuts and other goodies, and he will offer it to the White House in exchange for his life's dream of shredding what's left of the social safety net. He will put together a big pot of offal, slap a label reading "Medicare" on it, and then peddle it to the suckers.

As for Democrats, they are so fixated on their success in bringing down gropers in their midst, they have abandoned other issues (which in my view are of far more consequence to all Democrats:)

During the campaign, coverage of the issues was blotted out by coverage of Hillary Clinton’s emails and Donald Trump’s broad suite of sociopathic tendencies. And of the issues that did receive any attention, a conspicuously missing one was Paul Ryan’s plan to push Medicare beneficiaries into private health insurance. Reporters just assumed that, since Trump never talked about it, it won’t happen. But Paul Ryan still wants it to happen. And in a Fox News interview with Bret Baier, Ryan said Medicare privatization is on.

Ryan has falsely argued for years that Obamacare is making Medicare broke:

[According to Ryan} “Because of Obamacare, Medicare is going broke.” This is false. In fact, it’s the complete opposite of the truth. The Medicare trust fund has been extended 11 years as a result of the passage of Obamacare, whose cost reforms have helped bring health care inflation to historic lows. It is also untrue that repealing Obamacare requires changing traditional Medicare. But Ryan clearly believes he needs to make this claim in order to sell his plan, or probably even to convince fellow Republicans to support it.

The tax bill is not yet law. The House and Senate versions still have to be reconciled. Democrats need to take a break from their obsession with celebrity and congressional gropers and oppose the tax cut plan.

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  • Display: Sort:
    Stuff keeps coming out (5.00 / 1) (#1)
    by CaptHowdy on Fri Dec 08, 2017 at 06:41:17 PM EST
    About this thing.  Yesterday read there is a repeal of the law or rule or whatever that protects those who use or sell medical marijuana.  Sessions wants a crackdown.

    Also there is a repeal of the deduction for losses from fires or earthquakes which is just what Californians need to hear right now.  Btw 11 republicans from California voted for this.  Which is almost half what we need to take the house.

    Hope this is not OT.  If so delete it and I will put it in the open

    This is just a continuing nightmare. (5.00 / 1) (#2)
    by desertswine on Sat Dec 09, 2017 at 11:56:01 AM EST


    It is not passed yet (none / 0) (#3)
    by CaptHowdy on Sat Dec 09, 2017 at 12:01:35 PM EST
    not good for business (none / 0) (#4)
    by linea on Sat Dec 09, 2017 at 01:58:46 PM EST
    eliminating basic medical care for the poor and elderly isn't actually good for business or the economy. but Paul Ryan is a true believer in the Libertarian Utopia so none of that matters.

    as an aside, i've only ever know the basic food program as EBT (for example, there is a booth with an EBT sign at my local farmer's market). i suppose using `food stamps' adds clarity for some people but i had to google that term to understand which program we are refering to. apparently, the actual program is Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) but everyone i know calls it EBT.

    also, it's a stingy assistance program and according to wiki, `The average monthly EBT payout is $125 per participant.'

    The Republican tax bill (none / 0) (#5)
    by KeysDan on Sat Dec 09, 2017 at 04:02:40 PM EST
    may eliminate a deduction for medical expenses and take away thousands of dollars each year from many people who are sick and, often, old.

    The Senate bill would keep a deduction for medical expenses intact.  However, the House bill would kill it off entirely.

    An example of the effect if House bill prevails (or something similar if a compromise):  A 60-year old man is a paraplegic, nonverbal and incontinent.  His wife, age 58, oversees his care, with professional, round-the-clock, in-home care.  Loss of the tax break would cost the middle-class couple, for their tax bracket,  close to $30,000 annually.  

    Feature, not bug! (none / 0) (#6)
    by Erehwon on Sat Dec 09, 2017 at 07:48:07 PM EST
    Isn't this kind of thing that Ryan and his merry band love? Steal from the poor and give to the rich!

    Parent