IT DIDN’T surprise me that I’d come back from our festive holiday to find Medicare cuts being floated by the likes of Jonathan Chait, but especially Ezra Klein. If Klein is tagging it from the White House it’s not just a trial balloon or a bargaining point, as some have speculated, but Administration conventional thinking. Why people are even writing about this as news is what’s so interesting.
Back in 2011, during the debt ceiling talks, President Obama made it clear that entitlements were on the table. Why should anyone think after he won reelection they’re not?
The Wall Street Journal is aghast that Republicans are talking in public with some degree of candor about raising taxies on the top 2%, which was solidified through the November election, with the majority of the American people agreeing on that plan.
It shows you just how stupid many Republicans are today, especially as political bargainers.
It’s obvious to any political analyst worth her/his reputation that if Republicans give on the top 2%, the strongest ally they’ll have on cutting away on entitlements will be President Obama. It’s been clear for years that he believes in entitlement (ahem) “reform.”
Establishment brains like Chait and Klein also actually believe the optics on raising the Medicare eligibility age justify the action.
What few are digesting is that raising the Medicare eligibility age actually privatizes the program for those between 65-67, while simultaneously exploding costs. I’m not sure why progressive groups and their allies who have planned nationwide events today aren’t using that line, because it’s real.
If President Obama agrees to push the Medicare eligibility age from 65 to 67 in order to get the 2% tax increase the country voted for, he’s not only agreeing to privatize the program for a group of seniors who can least afford it, but helping Republicans achieve something they couldn’t even do under George W. Bush, because the people mutinied against it.
Did you vote for President Obama so he could help Republicans privatize Medicare?
Whatever discussions that need to be held on entitlements shouldn’t happen in the last weeks of a lame duck Congress. Let Congress know how you feel.