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Monday, October 08, 2012

Tommy Thompson's "Do Away With Medicare" Plan? Make It Go Bankrupt

According to this AP article making the rounds, Tommy Thompson assumes Medicare will continue to 2024. That can only mean one thing. He rejects Romney's budget plan to add an additional $716 billion in costs to the program. Because if Thompson supported Romney's proposal, he would know Medicare would cost the government more to operate causing it to go broke well before 2024. Under Romney, Medicare is expected cave in as early as 2016.

Romney also promised to cap non-defense spending at 16 percent of GDP. So, if Medicare is getting that $716 billion in additional costs back, Romney would have to double-down on cuts to other programs including defense to maintain his cap OR Medicare ....and that's simply not realistic. The truth is, Romney wants to make Medicare as cost prohibitive as possible to force it into insolvency as early as possible.

Only President Obama's proposal extends Medicare to 2024 without destabilizing the program, giving Congress eight more years to make the necessary adjustments to keep it solvent. However, this is where Thompson separates himself from saving Medicare.

SF Gate Excerpt:
"I am here to save Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security but you have to make some adjustments," he said.

Thompson said under his plan, those on Medicare who are over 55 in 2020 would stay on the program. Anyone under that age limit could choose to go on Medicare knowing it would be bankrupt in 2024 or join the federal health insurance benefit for federal employees, he said.

So Thompson's proposal for Medicare is closer to Romney's endgame, except eight years later. Thompson's attempt to backtrack his comment, "who better than me to do away with Medicare" is both lame and troubling especially now since his idea to make adjustments to "save" the program is by allowing people the choice to join Medicare "knowing" it would be bankrupt in 2024.

Gee, swell guy that Tommy is. Thanks alot.

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