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Dem chair calls Republican Medicare plan tornado through nursing homes; GOP hits Obama on health costs

by George Bennett | March 22nd, 2012

Aftermath of a 2011 tornado through nursing home in Joplin, Mo.

Ratcheting up the rhetoric on the eve of Vice President Joe Biden‘s visit to a South Florida senior community, Democratic National Committee Chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz today likened Republican Medicare proposals to “a tornado through America’s nursing homes.”

A spokesman for the Republican National Committee, which has been running ads blaming President Obama for higher health care costs, called Wasserman Schultz’s imagery “irresponsible rhetoric.”

Wasserman Schultz, a congresswoman from Broward County, and U.S. Rep. Ted Deutch, D-Boca Raton, criticized House Budget Chairman Paul Ryan‘s latest budget proposal, which Republican presidential frontrunner Mitt Romney hailed as a “bold step toward putting our nation back on the track to fiscal sanity and robust economic growth.”

Said Wasserman Schultz: “The Romney-Ryan budget would be devastating to seniors and older Americans. It is a Republican path to poverty that would pass like a tornado through America’s nursing homes where millions of America’s seniors receive long-term and end-of-life care.”

The Ryan plan — which has no chance of passing the Democrat-controlled Senate — would leave Medicare intact for current recipients and those nearing retirement. But when those who are now 54 and younger reach retirement, the plan would replace the current fee-for-service program with subsidies to purchase insurance.

Medicare trustees estimate the program as it’s now structured won’t be able to pay full benefits beginning in 2024.

“Republicans are stepping up to the plate and showing true leadership by tackling structural budgetary problems that will haunt future generations if Congress takes no action,” said Republican National Committee spokesman Matt Connelly, who called the tornado remark “irresponsible rhetoric.”

Asked how Democrats would extend Medicare’s solvency, Wasserman Schultz said, “President Obama believes that you can add solvency to Medicare, you can reduce the costs of Medicare, without ending Medicare’s guarantee, without blowing a hole in the safety net that Medicare is and without turning Medicare into a voucher program.”

Biden is expected to focus on senior themes Friday when he visits the Wynmoor retirement community in Coconut Creek. The hundreds of tickets that were made available for the event have all been claimed, the Obama campaign said.

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5 Responses to “Dem chair calls Republican Medicare plan tornado through nursing homes; GOP hits Obama on health costs”

  1. ALLEN WEST MUST GO Says:

    Republicans simply REFUSE to let the social safety net exist for the elderly.

    They want to eliminate it entirely.

    Anyone who votes for a Republican better not have a family member on Medicare!

    ALL REPUBLICANS NEED TO BE VOTED OUT IN NOVEMBER.

    BOTH STATE LEVEL AND FEDERAL.

    ENOUGH IS ENOUGH.

    THE EXTRACTION ENDS HERE IN FLORIDA ON NOVEMBER 6th, 2012.

    VOTE.
    VOTE.
    VOTE.

  2. Jen06 Says:

    Obamacare takes $500 BILLION out of Medicare over 10 years (started in 2011). Who is hurting seniors? Death panels scare Americans too. Esp those of us heading toward that cliff. Or should we call them “Cost Control and Qualitative Assessment Boards”

  3. jim Says:

    The new Ryan budget plan destroys the social safety net, eliminates its guarantee, makes it a voucher program, adds 5 trillion to the debt over 10 years, continues the Voodoo Reaganomics that has devastated Americans working class, with all the cuts from social programs going to the “job” creators.
    The biggest problem President Obama’s health care reform act is it didn’t go far enough.
    Americans pay more for health care per capita than any other industrialized nation, with the worst out comes in every measurable category, that is the sad fact, the Republicans are screening because it restricts the fraud that has been perpetrated by the insurance industry at the expense of the American people.
    They also are fighting the Consumer protection agency because they do not want anything standing in the way of the continued extraction of what is left of the wealth that was in America.
    At every level of government Republicans are at the very heart of almost every negative aspect of the American situation, form opposing marriage equality, women’s reproductive health, deregulation, destruction of workers rights, Privatized for profit prisons,turning the public education system for profit education business.The list is too long and egregious to name them all.
    Republicans have demonstrated time and again that they will put their political ideology and personal enrichment ahead everything including the needs of the American people.
    We the People must unite.
    Register and make your vote count.

  4. Tina Ferrer Says:

    This analogy might work in the Hamptons, New York or San Francisco but don’t try it here Ms. Wasserman Schultz. Why? Because collectively we still have some semblance of common sense.

    President Obama? You have 9 months.

  5. www.e-nursingschools.com Says:

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