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Tea Partiers and Conservatives live in their own reality, especially when it comes to numbers. They find an easily digestible sound-byte line and they repeat it into the ground. Florida's Marco Rubio, or Mr. Tea Party, refused to back Paul Ryan's budget mess when asked if he supported it on MTP and then made up his own numbers pertaining to Medicare and what the Ryan budget actually does. David Gregory asked Rubio questions and instead of answering him outright, he deflected the question and said he's for anything that will fix the budget. Oh, where's the love? Here's the CBO on RyanCare:
Under the proposal, most elderly people would pay more for their health care than they would pay under the current Medicare system. For a typical 65-year-old with average health spending enrolled in a plan with benefits similar to those currently provided by Medicare, CBO estimated the beneficiary’s spending on premiums and out-of-pocket expenditures as a share of a benchmark: what total health care spending would be if a private insurer covered the beneficiary. By 2030, the beneficiary’s spending would be 68 percent of that benchmark under the proposal, 25 percent under the extended-baseline scenario, and 30 percent under the alternative fiscal scenario. … CBO estimates that average spending in traditional Medicare will be 89 percent of (that is, 11 percent less than) the spending that would occur if that same package of benefits was purchased from a private insurer.
Rubio makes up magical numbers to defend cuts to Medicare and said that Ryan's budget actually increased funding to Medicare while sticking to the previously debunked notion that HCR will cut 500 billion out of Medicare.
Rubio: The Ryan plan doesn't cut Medicare, it actually increases funding in it and the only people in this town that have voted to cut medicare that are the people who supported Obamacare, that cut half a trillion dollars for the next ten years from medicare.
Political Correction has all the details of that lie:
FactCheck.org: Cost Saving Provisions "Not A Slashing Of The Current Medicare Budget Or Benefits." According to FactCheck.org: "Whatever you want to call them, it's a $500 billion reduction in the growth of future spending over 10 years, not a slashing of the current Medicare budget or benefits. It's true that those who get their coverage through Medicare Advantage's private plans (about 22 percent of Medicare enrollees) would see fewer add-on benefits; the bill aims to reduce the heftier payments made by the government to Medicare Advantage plans, compared with regular fee-for-service Medicare. The Democrats' bill also boosts certain benefits: It makes preventive care free and closes the 'doughnut hole,' a current gap in prescription drug coverage for seniors." [FactCheck.org, 3/19/10]
Screaming that Medicare is going broke must be Frank Luntz' instructions to Conservative since that's all Rubio kept coming back to. But that ignores the second half of the sentence: "...under current revenue structures." How does privatizing this system (which then builds in corporate profits rather than the pay for service system now) make things better? What happens to seniors who can't afford the additional costs imposed upon them by the Ryan plan? Proposing ludicrous ideas are not brave.
Jonathan Chait debunks Paul Ryan in an interview he conducted with the Wisconsin Congressman in a post called: Debunking Paul Ryan's Latest Spin
John Cohn takes apart the idea that Ryan's plan would even decrease the federal deficit one iota.
“Only” is a slightly misleading term here, since $4.5 trillion dollars would still represent a large spending cut. But wait! The House Republican budget also calls for tax cuts—$4.2 trillion of them. In other words, the tax cuts in the House Republican budget would very nearly offset the spending cuts, leaving just $380 billion in additional savings over ten years.
It would be nice if our beltway media would arm themselves with enough facts about this entire debate so that when Conservatives lie about the numbers they could actually correct them on the spot and not at a later date or if ever. I know it's a bit complicated, but letting lies go unchallenged is not an option either.