Medicare Floor Speech
Stop the Raid; Repeal the Rationing Board; Save Medicare
Rep. Paul Ryan of Wisconsin – Remarks on House floor – June 1, 2011
Let’s for a moment talk about Medicare. Medicare as we know is already gone. Our friends on the other side of the aisle – when they passed the Affordable Care Act – stopped the Medicare status quo.
The President’s new health care law already ended Medicare as know it. It does two things: It raids Medicare; and it rations Medicare.
Obamacare Raids Medicare: It takes over $500 billion from Medicare to spend on the President’s new health care law, not to extend Medicare’s solvency. Just as people have complained for years that we are raiding the Social Security Trust Fund, the President’s health care law does that to Medicare now.
Obamacare Rations Medicare: Starting next year, the President will appoint 15 unelected, unaccountable bureaucrats to price control and to ration Medicare for current seniors.
Status Quo Bankrupts Medicare: What’s worse is the President and Senate still have yet to put out a plan to save Medicare to prevent it from going bankrupt.
1. We stop the raid of Medicare in our budget and make sure that $500 billion stays with Medicare to advance its solvency.
2. We repeal the Medicare rationing board so we don’t put bureaucrats in charge of determining what kind of health care benefits seniors do or do not get.
3. We save Medicare. If you are on Medicare or if your ten years away from retiring – 55 and above - government already made a promise to you. We want government to keep that promise. Under our budget we keep that promise.
We stop the raid. We repeal the rationing board. And for those of us 54 and below who have a bankrupt system that we right now cannot count on, we reform Medicare so it works like the system Members of Congress and federal employees have. It is a system that looks like Medicare Advantage or the Medicare Prescription Drug Benefit Program today: seniors get a choice of plans offered to them by Medicare – guaranteed coverage options – from which they can choose and Medicare subsidizes that plan. It doesn’t subsidize people as much if they are wealthy and subsidizes them a lot more if they are low income or sick.
This saves Medicare. This puts Medicare on a path to solvency. And more importantly, by saving it for future generations, we can keep our promises to current seniors. We stop the raid. We repeal the rationing board. And we save the program. That is what our budget proposes to do.