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Why Threats To Medicare/Medicaid For Younger People Fail: Grandma Is Taking Care Of The Kids

The Paul Ryan Budget defenders have today's talking point that Democrats are "scaring seniors" about Medicare and Medicaid changes, and that seniors don't have to think about opposing the Ryan plan because only those under 55 are affected. Oh

grandmas house.jpg

The Paul Ryan Budget defenders have today's talking point that Democrats are "scaring seniors" about Medicare and Medicaid changes, and that seniors don't have to think about opposing the Ryan plan because only those under 55 are affected.

Oh really?

The Pew Research Center reported last fall that these days, one in ten children live with a grandparent. This number is up considerably since the start of the recession. At least 50% of grandparents have been a caregiver to a grandchild in the past year.

For the most part, grandparent caregivers have very limited financial resources. Nearly one-in-five (18%) are living below the poverty line, while 47% have household incomes that fall between one- and three-times the poverty line. In comparison, among the population ages 50 and older, 8% are below the poverty line, and 32% are living on an income that is between one- and three-times the poverty rate.

It's very difficult to find national numbers for Medicaid, but this pdf report shows 30.3% of children nationwide were covered by Medicaid/CHIP, and 10.2 percent of children were uninsured. Grandparents raising grandchildren DEPEND on health care programs for younger people, to insure their families.

Pitting one generation against another, in an effort to gut Medicare and Medicaid, is guaranteed to fail. Contrary to what Randite Republicans preach, we live in a society that is inter-dependent, one generation on the other. Grandmas across the country have plenty reason to tell the Republican Party, "don't pull the plug on my grandchildren."

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