Romney Lies About Medicare/Medicaid Change Of Address Form

The brouhaha about what Mitt Romney said about Wawa touch screens overshadowed a bigger point, as explained by Joan McCarter, Medicare requires more paperwork to avoid fraud. But it also revealed that, shocking I know, Mitt Romney is a liar. Mediate explains:

[T]he mainstream media are so accustomed to being worked over by right-wing cries of “bias” that they leapt to condemn MSNBC’s completely reasonable editing of the clip, even as they ignored the glaring lie Romney told in the longer clip. As it turns out, MSNBC did him a favor by omitting his stupid comparison, but they won’t get much thanks for it. [...]

Romney’s anecdote about the optometrist and the 33-page change of address form:[?][...] He only missed it by 31 pages. That’s right, the form that’s so very inferior to the sandwich computers at “Wawa’s” is two pages long, four if you include the instructions. That optometrist is either delusional, or a delusion of Romney’s. Either way, it’s inexcusable for journalists to let this go,

We'll see what happens today. Probably nothing.

Speaking for me only

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    Maybe he was referring to one of these (5.00 / 1) (#12)
    by Payaso on Tue Jun 19, 2012 at 12:20:09 PM EST
    CMS 855I - 27 pages in length:

    Physicians and non-physician practitioners who are enrolled in the Medicare program, but have not submitted the CMS 855I since 2003, are required to submit a Medicare enrollment application (i.e., Internet-based PECOS or the CMS 855I) as an initial application when reporting a change for the first time.

    CMS 855B - 49 pages in length

    Clinics and group practices who are enrolled in the Medicare program, but have not submitted the CMS 855B since 2003, are required to submit a Medicare enrollment application (i.e., Internet-based PECOS or the CMS 855B) as an initial application when reporting a change for the first time.

    Looks like Payaso (none / 0) (#15)
    by lousy1 on Tue Jun 19, 2012 at 02:00:19 PM EST
    just found one. Where do those lies go?

    Found what? (none / 0) (#23)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Tue Jun 19, 2012 at 03:26:57 PM EST
    Not change of address forms.

    Wherever you post them, ... (none / 0) (#26)
    by Yman on Tue Jun 19, 2012 at 05:44:36 PM EST
    ... considering those aren't change of address forms.

    They go viral, where they magically (none / 0) (#27)
    by Anne on Tue Jun 19, 2012 at 06:03:46 PM EST
    become truth to people who are only too willing to believe them.

    And yes, I'm looking at you.


    Thanks for the look! (none / 0) (#33)
    by lousy1 on Tue Jun 19, 2012 at 09:01:31 PM EST
    but isn't it hard to see through such highly tinted lenses?

    I think I a trying to put to correct a 'wrong perception' by adding a few facts.


    It appears that the claim that (none / 0) (#32)
    by lousy1 on Tue Jun 19, 2012 at 08:51:16 PM EST
    Romney lied is disingenuous.

    Atlantic Botches it

    Explains it succinctly.

    It should be clear, especially to someone who was there listening, that Romney was not talking about a simple US Post Office change of address form. He's talking about changing an address on file with the federal government for purposes of issuing payments. Based on the description Romney gives ("services he provides for the poor and seniors") this is probably a Medicare form. In fact, it might even be this form, CMS 855I.

    "Might even be" ... heh (none / 0) (#36)
    by Yman on Tue Jun 19, 2012 at 09:30:04 PM EST
    Romney didn't say whether he was talking about Medicare or Medicaid, but either way, he's wrong.  He was talking about a program for "the poor and seniors", which sounds like Medicaid, given that Medicare doesn't cover "the poor".  Medicaid uses a 2-page form (4 pages including instructions) for address changes.

    Medicare, OTOH, doesn't have a change-of-address form.  They do have an online system where providers can change their information, but for providers who cannot or are unable to use the online system, providers must complete an enrollment packet.  Of course, this form (the one Breitbart is pointing to) is much more than a change-of-address form.  It is a contract, with much of its 25 pages consisting of warning about Medicare fraud, something I would think anyone would want included in a provider contract.


    The relevant question is (none / 0) (#43)
    by lousy1 on Tue Jun 19, 2012 at 11:11:50 PM EST
    was the practitioner required to fill out a 30 page form?

    Presenting alternative forms that you postulate are sufficient is not respondent,


    Heh (5.00 / 1) (#48)
    by Yman on Wed Jun 20, 2012 at 07:01:43 AM EST
    And the form that you are presenting as overly sufficient is respondent, despite the fact that it's not a change of address form as you claimed, nor is it 33 pages as Romney stated, nor is it a Medicaid form (i.e. "the poor")?  You did say the dentists  "The dentist recounting is quite specific" (optometrist, actually).   So find a form from some government program that includes address information, is withing a few pages of 33 in length and we'll say it "appears" he was talking about that one?



    It seems that (none / 0) (#55)
    by lousy1 on Wed Jun 20, 2012 at 10:36:43 AM EST
    eveyone is just picking a form. This one is sifficiently close to illustrate the comparison he was making. The post office form is not. That is the misrepresentation

    "Sufficiently close" - heh (none / 0) (#57)
    by Yman on Wed Jun 20, 2012 at 09:36:12 PM EST
    Suddenly, the "quite specific" accounting from the optometrist is "sufficiently close" because it's closer to 33 than 4, and despite the fact that it has nothing to do with treating "the poor" - as Mitt relayed the story.

    Close enough for private industry?



    The title of this thread is (none / 0) (#58)
    by lousy1 on Wed Jun 20, 2012 at 11:16:53 PM EST
    Romney lied. Prove it.

     Every neutral observer I have encountered (including Lannie Davis) uses the facts presented and concludes that NBC lied not Romney,

    Why is it so hard to acknowledge the obvious?


    Not my title (none / 0) (#60)
    by Yman on Sun Jun 24, 2012 at 01:58:47 PM EST
    At the very least, Romney's story was completely inaccurate, ...

    ... as are your attempts to defend it.


    It appears there are multiple forms (none / 0) (#19)
    by Abdul Abulbul Amir on Tue Jun 19, 2012 at 02:56:50 PM EST

    It appears there are multiple forms for change of address depending on your status.  One wonders if there are penalties or delays for using the easy two pager when the longer 27 or 49 pager is required.  

    How many pages are required to point a prospective address changer to the correct form.  



    Those aren't change of address forms (none / 0) (#22)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Tue Jun 19, 2012 at 03:26:36 PM EST
    Those are forms (none / 0) (#47)
    by Abdul Abulbul Amir on Wed Jun 20, 2012 at 06:52:23 AM EST

    Those are forms that are required to use when changing address for some.  In ordinary speaking, to ordinary people the form you are required to use when reporting a change of address is called a "change of address form."  

    To say that that is a lie is an embarrassment.  



    Noooo (none / 0) (#49)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Wed Jun 20, 2012 at 07:35:09 AM EST
    They are not.

    Oh, BTD...it has been heavy slogging (5.00 / 2) (#50)
    by Anne on Wed Jun 20, 2012 at 08:26:01 AM EST
    here through the swamp of right-wing talking points...

    The Zimmermin swarm. (5.00 / 3) (#52)
    by oculus on Wed Jun 20, 2012 at 08:28:52 AM EST
    Cannot wait for that to finish.  

    Lets get the facts straight. (5.00 / 1) (#54)
    by Abdul Abulbul Amir on Wed Jun 20, 2012 at 08:39:02 AM EST

    True or false?

    The guy wanted to report a change of address and was required to use a 30 page or so form to do so.



    False (none / 0) (#56)
    by Yman on Wed Jun 20, 2012 at 09:30:05 PM EST
    Unless you have some actual evidence to the contrary.

    You called Romney a liar (none / 0) (#59)
    by lousy1 on Wed Jun 20, 2012 at 11:18:02 PM EST
    why does he have to prove anything?

    Actually, I didn't ... (none / 0) (#61)
    by Yman on Sun Jun 24, 2012 at 02:01:48 PM EST
    .... call Romney a liar.

    But you either have a serious reading comprehension issue, or you are one.


    Not a change of address (none / 0) (#21)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Tue Jun 19, 2012 at 03:22:03 PM EST
    Nope it a change (none / 0) (#34)
    by lousy1 on Tue Jun 19, 2012 at 09:20:58 PM EST
    of address form required by medicare. What would lead you to suspect it was a simple Post office form. The dentist recounting is quite specific.

    Did you even look at the form? (none / 0) (#37)
    by Yman on Tue Jun 19, 2012 at 09:37:43 PM EST

    There's a link to the form in the article you cited from Breitbart.  It is not a "change of address" form.  Medicare uses an online system for its provider information.  The form you are talking about is a Medicare Enrollment Application.  It's a contract (not an address change form) that Medicare providers must read and complete in order to participate in the program.  It requires much more information than a provider's address (as it should) and it details numerous warnings against Medicare fraud (as it also should).


    Yes (none / 0) (#42)
    by lousy1 on Tue Jun 19, 2012 at 11:06:50 PM EST
    And it also appears that the government  requires  physicians, who have not filled out updated form recently, to submit this form  merely to change billing address.

    Romney narrative vindicated?



    "It appears" .... heh (none / 0) (#51)
    by Yman on Wed Jun 20, 2012 at 08:27:48 AM EST
    Read as, "I don't really know, ... but to me, it looks like ..."

    Not surprisingly, Fox and MSNBC... (5.00 / 1) (#44)
    by Dadler on Wed Jun 20, 2012 at 01:12:45 AM EST
    ...are numbers one and two in most misinformed viewers.  

    And TL seems to have (5.00 / 2) (#45)
    by Anne on Wed Jun 20, 2012 at 06:29:03 AM EST
    attracted some of them, who have been dazzling us with their insightful grasp of so many issues...[rolling eyes]

    Ok. Now I get it. (none / 0) (#53)
    by oculus on Wed Jun 20, 2012 at 08:31:32 AM EST
    Fox is keeping this alive?

    Somewhere in here is a joke about the (4.75 / 4) (#9)
    by Anne on Tue Jun 19, 2012 at 12:02:34 PM EST
    optometrist needing to have his eyes examined, don't you think?

    And it seems there could probably be a several-times-a-week post that could just be titled, "Romney Lies," or "What Romney's Lying About Now," because he does, and every other day it's about something else.

    What a malevolent doofus.

    As much as I love Wawa (none / 0) (#1)
    by lilburro on Tue Jun 19, 2012 at 10:59:30 AM EST
    the logic used in making that comparison is baffling, regardless of the size of the form.  I hope Obama responds to this one.

    Re: "WaWa." I finally googled (none / 0) (#6)
    by oculus on Tue Jun 19, 2012 at 11:11:35 AM EST
    it.  Now in the "learn something everyday" category.  

    Wawa (5.00 / 1) (#7)
    by lilburro on Tue Jun 19, 2012 at 11:39:46 AM EST
    powered me through college.  If I remember correctly they also have all day bagels and things like that.  It's open 24 hours so it was nice to be able to eat something relatively nutritious at 3 am, and their coffee is no joke.

    I have never WaWa'd either (5.00 / 1) (#16)
    by Militarytracy on Tue Jun 19, 2012 at 02:08:00 PM EST
    Ha (none / 0) (#17)
    by jbindc on Tue Jun 19, 2012 at 02:08:37 PM EST
    "reasonable editing" by MSNBC - only if "reasonable" means taking the entire set of comments out of context.

    Who is doing the editing at MSNBC?  First the Zimmerman fiasco and now this shoddy work?

    Why should we believe anything MSNBC says about anybody anymore?  Even if they are covering the more important aspect of this story, as BTD points out - why watch them?

    Silly season is in full gear.


    SDtuff the BS people (none / 0) (#2)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Tue Jun 19, 2012 at 11:07:22 AM EST
    I'll give you an Open Thread to spout your stupidities.

    Give me a sec.

    Forest > Trees (5.00 / 1) (#3)
    by CST on Tue Jun 19, 2012 at 11:07:34 AM EST
    It's not just about the length of a form.  It's that his entire argument (government beurocracy = bad, private vending machine companies = good) is completely unfounded, his argument makes no sense, and the example he used to represent that is not true.

    that was not to btd (none / 0) (#4)
    by CST on Tue Jun 19, 2012 at 11:08:24 AM EST
    how did you replace the comment I replied to with your own, so that it still ended up as a reply?

    I dunno (5.00 / 2) (#5)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Tue Jun 19, 2012 at 11:10:50 AM EST
    The comment was so stupid I could not stand to look at it.

    But I made an open thread for stupid comments.

    And I'm gone for the rest of the day and tomorrow.

    So let stupidity reign!!


    Now that BTD is gone, which comment made him (none / 0) (#8)
    by Farmboy on Tue Jun 19, 2012 at 11:54:30 AM EST
    so upset? Must have been a doozy.

    On-topic, there are certain sorts of media events both Obama and Romney need to stay away from. Obama needs to not put on a crash helmet or any sort of PPE. Romney needs to avoid checkout scanners or any sort of commonplace consumer interactions with technology. In either of these cases the media will pounce, and ignore/distort what was really said.

    As to Romney lying, Benen has been running a weekly column on that topic over at Maddow Blog for months, and even his bosses at MSNBC don't seem to pick up on it.


    Paraphrasing: (5.00 / 1) (#10)
    by CST on Tue Jun 19, 2012 at 12:16:15 PM EST
    Ahhhhh!!!  No one cares about lies!!!  Hyperbole!!! Democrats are loooosers!!!  AIOPUTHPIWEUSH!!!

    So, you "saved your work"? (none / 0) (#13)
    by oculus on Tue Jun 19, 2012 at 12:48:47 PM EST
    What in the world is a AIOPUTHPIWEUSH? (none / 0) (#14)
    by Farmboy on Tue Jun 19, 2012 at 01:37:33 PM EST
    And who are you paraphrasing?

    It's code for (none / 0) (#18)
    by CST on Tue Jun 19, 2012 at 02:11:52 PM EST
    gibberish, I just banged my fingers on the keyboard a few time, caps for emphasis.  I was paraphrasing the comment (not mine, the one I responded to) that was deleted.

    Is his point that Medicare should be replaced? (none / 0) (#20)
    by AF on Tue Jun 19, 2012 at 03:17:11 PM EST
    By private insurance.  Well, yes, actually in that he supports the Ryan plan.  But you won't hear him say that.  On the contrary, he'll swear to defend Medicare with his last dying breath and criticize Obama for cutting Medicare -- at the very same time that he's citing Medicare as an example of a bad government program and supporting the end of Medicare as we know it in the Ryan plan.  

    And then, if Obama politely suggests that based on Romney's stated support for ending Medicare as we know it, it appears that Romney in fact wants to end Medicare as we know it, Romney will cry foul.  And the Washington Post FactChecker will back him up, reasoning that since the Ryan plan would retain the word "Medicare" to describe a program that shares nothing in common with Medicare as currently structured, it is somehow wrong to describe it as ending Medicare as we know it.

    All politicians lie, but (5.00 / 1) (#24)
    by KeysDan on Tue Jun 19, 2012 at 03:36:22 PM EST
    for Romney it is his modus operandi, a means to his ends-- a way of life.   Romney is not the lesser of two evils he is the greater of them.   However, the media seems cowed.

    Greg Sargent will get to the bottom (none / 0) (#25)
    by oculus on Tue Jun 19, 2012 at 03:43:31 PM EST
    of this.  He wants Romney to cough up the eye doctor and he also wants a response from Medicare: the curious case of the 33 page change-of-address form

    the point is the government is inefficient (none / 0) (#28)
    by Steve27 on Tue Jun 19, 2012 at 06:42:48 PM EST
    I think Romney's point was that government does not care about making its regulations easier to comply with. Or at least the government workers do not place much of a priority on ease of use.

    Why can't change of address be done online, with the change propagating to all the accounts a person or business has with the government?

    Romney would be terrific at bring efficiency to the government.

    One lesson from a long ago lecture (5.00 / 1) (#29)
    by christinep on Tue Jun 19, 2012 at 07:09:42 PM EST
    that I've never forgotten: "Efficiency" is in the eye of the beholde...it is not and cannot be the sine qua non of good government.  (One nasty example used in political science seminars is the classic "Mussolini made the trains run on time." Meaning that a dictatorship can be the most efficient form of government, in the short term.)

    There were periods during my government service when the business-does-it-this-way was fashionable.  Public private partnership (acronym PPP) became popular.  At some point what tended to happen or be realized was the understanding that the public service does not have, cannot have the same "bottom line" as a for-profit organization.  Wall Street exemplifies the outsize for-profit situation these days...I do not think most people want the government to emulate that value system when it comes to exercising government authority.  And, frankly, when you look at it, the basic myth at bottom of the business school takeaway about efficiency has a lot of flaws...not the least of which is that large, major corporations with their overpayment of failing executives and with their taking-care-of-the-top first motif are the opposite of even the the narrowest definition of "efficiency."  


    why so little automation in government (none / 0) (#30)
    by Steve27 on Tue Jun 19, 2012 at 07:14:51 PM EST
    The government I see, the social security and IRS office, the DMV, the tax forms is not very user friendly. At the DMV here in NJ there are no kiosks with computer terminals for entering basic info. In the post office again no automation in sight. The local social security office is on one side of the highway and the IRS is on the other. Obviously the offices should be merged. Esp now that we need security guards everywhere. How did society ever function without a security guard everywhere?

    Romney would be "efficient" at (5.00 / 1) (#31)
    by Anne on Tue Jun 19, 2012 at 08:24:44 PM EST
    killing the most efficient medical plan this country has - Medicare - and putting the health and financial well-being of millions of seniors at risk, all to the benefit of private insurance, its stockholders and management.

    As for making regulations easier to comply with, I think where Romney is concerned, what that translates to is making it easier to circumvent the regulations, again to the detriment of millions of people who depend on Medicare.

    Maybe these arguments work on the conservative blogs where you normally hang out, but you aren't going to find many - if any - buyers here for what you're selling.


    I though arguments (none / 0) (#35)
    by lousy1 on Tue Jun 19, 2012 at 09:24:01 PM EST
    could stand on their merits unbridled by ideology.

    I observe that you are expressing opinions not facts


    So, you're saying that Romney doesn't (none / 0) (#38)
    by Anne on Tue Jun 19, 2012 at 09:48:47 PM EST
    support the Paul Ryan plan?

    Although have noticed (none / 0) (#40)
    by lousy1 on Tue Jun 19, 2012 at 10:45:21 PM EST
    some areas where Romney and Ryan tend to agree I also notice some policies where Obama and Ryan tend to agree.

    Its silly

    Does Obama

    support the Paul Ryan plan?

    Or is is it possible that each candidate can suggest positions that can  stand on their own merits irregardless of the characterization that  there positions  might intersect with the positions some demonized third party?


    So, is Medicare one of the areas where (5.00 / 2) (#46)
    by Anne on Wed Jun 20, 2012 at 06:38:06 AM EST
    Romney agrees with Ryan or not?  Or are you avoiding the specifics because you'd have to admit that I actually had more on my side than an opinion when I said that Romney would be more efficient at killing Medicare?

    Listen, I am under no illusions about the strength of Obama's commitment to the social safety net - it's weak, very weak.  And it is highly disturbing to me and many other liberals to see how enamored Obama is of the ideas of Ryan, not to mention Bowles/Simpson.

    But Romney is the subject under discussion, so either address the specifics raised, or have the balls to admit you got nothin' on this.


    Why wouldn't you (none / 0) (#39)
    by DizzyMissL on Tue Jun 19, 2012 at 10:33:36 PM EST
    say the optometrist is the liar?

    Because the optometrist (none / 0) (#41)
    by lousy1 on Tue Jun 19, 2012 at 10:48:04 PM EST
    1. didn't lie

    2. is not running for office