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Romney Campaign Press Release - President Obama Kicks The Can On Medicare

August 16, 2012

"Before becoming president, Barack Obama promised the nation he would fix a 'broken' Medicare system. But after nearly four years in office, the only thing President Obama has accomplished is a massive $716 billion cut from Medicare to pay for Obamacare. As president, Mitt Romney will reverse President Obama's cuts and strengthen Medicare for our nation's seniors and future retirees." — Amanda Henneberg, Romney Campaign Spokesperson

Since His Election To The Senate, Barack Obama Has Repeatedly Claimed Medicare Is "Broken" And He's Pledged To Fix It:

Senator Obama, In The Audacity Of Hope: "The Two Main Government-Funded Health-Care Programs — Medicare And Medicaid — Really Are Broken..." "As vital as it may be to raise the wages of American workers and improve their retirement security, perhaps our most pressing task is to fix our broken health-care system. Unlike Social Security, the two main government-funded health-care programs — Medicare and Medicaid — really are broken; without any changes, by 2050 these two entitlements, along with Social Security, could grow to consume as large a share of our national economy as the entire federal budget does today. The addition of a hugely expensive prescription drug benefit that provides limited coverage and does nothing to control the cost of drugs has only made the problem worse. And the private system has evolved into a patchwork of inefficient bureaucracies, endless paperwork, overburdened providers, and dissatisfied patients." (Barack Obama, The Audacity Of Hope, 2006, p.183)

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Candidate Obama, On Reforming Medicare: "I'd Like To Do It In My First Term As President." BROKAW: "Would you give Congress a date certain to reform Social Security and Medicare within two years after you take office? Because in a bipartisan way, everyone agrees, that's a big ticking time bomb that will eat us up maybe even more than the mortgage crisis." OBAMA: "Well, Tom, we're going to have to take on entitlements and I think we've got to do it quickly. We're going to have a lot of work to do, so I can't guarantee that we're going to do it in the next two years, but I'd like to do in the my first term as president." (Sen. Barack Obama, Remarks At Presidential Debate, Nashville, TN, 10/7/08)

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President-Elect Obama, On Reforming Entitlement Programs: "What We Have Done Is Kick This Can Down The Road. We're Now At The End Of The Road, And We're Not In A Position To Kick Any Further." OBAMA: "The real problem with our long-term deficit actually has to do with our entitlement obligations and the fact that, historically, if our revenues ranged from between 18 and 20 percent of GDP, they're now at 16, it's just not sustainable. So, we're going to have to craft a—what George Stephanopoulos called a 'grand bargain,' and I try not to use the word grand in anything that I say, but we're going to have to shape a bargain. This, by the way, is where there are going to be some very difficult choices and issues of sacrifice and responsibility and duty are going to come in, because what we have done is kick this can down the road. We're now at the end of the road, and we're not in a position to kick it any further." (President Obama, Interview With The Washington Post Editorial Board, 1/15/09)

But Instead Of Fixing Medicare, President Obama Cut $716 Billion From Medicare To Pay For Obamacare:

According To The Nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office, Obamacare Cuts $716 Billion From Medicare. (Congressional Budget Office, Letter To Speaker John Boehner, 7/24/12)

·         The Miami Herald: "Obama's $700 Billion Medicare-Cut Problem" (Marc Caputo, "Obama's

$700 Billion Medicare-Cut Problem," The Miami Herald, 8/12/12)

"Medicare Actuaries And Trustees Say Medicare's Hospital Insurance Trust Fund Will Be Exhausted In 2024 Under Current Law." (Robert Pear, "Romney Medicare Plan Draws A Stark Contrast," The New York Times, 5/15/12)

Obamacare's Cuts Will Cause Enrollment In Medicare Advantage To "Plummet By About 50 Percent" And Leave Seniors With "Higher Out-Of-Pocket Costs." "In addition to flagging provider cuts as potentially unsustainable, the report [HHS] projected that reductions in payments to private Medicare Advantage plans would trigger an exodus from the popular alternative. Enrollment would plummet by about 50 percent. Seniors leaving the private plans would still have health insurance under traditional Medicare, but many might face higher out-of-pocket costs." (Ricardo Alonso-Zaldivar, "Report Says Health Care Will Cover More, Cost More," The Associated Press, 4/23/10), On Medicare Under President Obama: "The Promise That 'Benefits Will Remain The Same' Is Just As Fictional As The Town Of Mayberry..." "Currently, about 1 in every 4 Medicare beneficiary is enrolled in a Medicare Advantage plan. For many of them, the words in this ad ring hollow, and the promise that 'benefits will remain the same' is just as fictional as the town of Mayberry was when Griffith played the local sheriff." (Brooks Jackson, "Mayberry Misleads On Medicare,", 7/31/10)

And President Obama Has Proposed "No Meaningful Reforms" For Medicare And Has "Failed To Lead His Party" On Fixing Medicare For Future Retirees:

Democratic Strategist Doug Schoen: "President Obama Has Largely Avoided Taking On Entitlement Reform And The Need To Rein In Spending And Balance The Budget." "President Obama has largely avoided taking on entitlement reform and the need to rein in spending and balance the budget.  Obama declined to endorse the Bowles-Simpson commission's recommendations, which aimed to reduce the debt to 60% of GDP and keep decreasing with time, and included serious attempts to restructure Social Security and Medicare programs." (Doug Schoen, Op-Ed, "The Time For Entitlement Reform Is Now," Forbes, 5/4/12)

The Columbus Dispatch: "Barack Obama Spoke Of The Need For Entitlement Reform ...  But As President, Has Failed To Lead His Party Or Democratic Voters In That Inevitable Direction." "For his part, President Barack Obama spoke of the need for entitlement reform as a candidate in 2008, but as president, has failed to lead his party or Democratic voters in that inevitable direction." (Editorial, "Fix The Problem, The Columbus Dispatch, 5/29/12)

The Wall Street Journal: "His Budget Also Proposes No Meaningful Reforms In Entitlements, Which Are The Fastest Growing Part Of The Budget And Will Grow Even Faster Once Obamacare Really Kicks In." (Editorial, "The Amazing Obama Budget," The Wall Street Journal, 2/15/12)

USA Today: "Obama Doesn't Much Care About The Debt Threat Or Has Decided To Wait Until After The 2012 Elections. Either Would Be A Shame..." "It's becoming hard not to conclude that Obama doesn't much care about the debt threat or has decided to wait until after the 2012 elections. Either would be a shame, and economically risky." (Editorial, "Obama's Budget Ducks Tough Choices," USA Today, 2/15/11)

Mitt Romney, Romney Campaign Press Release - President Obama Kicks The Can On Medicare Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project

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