Just before Republicans took to the House floor and voted 235-193 to destroy Medicare as we know it, Rep. Jeb Hensarling from Texas came on the air with Andrea Mitchell and defended their decision to throw senior citizens under the bus. Hensarling continually used the excuse that the program is "going broke" as an excuse to privatize it and shift the cost onto individuals rather than ask the wealthiest among us to pay more in taxes so we can shore up the fund.
Think Progress has more on the vote taken today in the House -- BREAKING: House Republicans Overwhelmingly Vote To Phase Out Medicare:
This afternoon, House Republicans overwhelming endorsed his plan to eliminate Medicare, slash education, and jack up the middle class’ taxes. 235 Republicans supported the Medicare elimination bill, with just 4 GOPers casting a vote to leave Medicare unmolested.
The centerpiece of the House Republicans’ plan is a proposal that repeals traditional Medicare and replaces it with a health insurance voucher that loses its value over time. Because the value of the Republicans’ privatized Medicare replacement does not keep up with the cost of health care, their plan will gradually eliminate Medicare because its increasingly worthless vouchers will eventually only cover a very tiny fraction of the cost of a health insurance plan.
Seniors will feel the effect of the GOP’s draconian plan long before it succeeds in phasing out Medicare. According to the CBO, total health care expenditures for a typical 65-year-old “would be almost 40 percent higher with private coverage under the GOP plan than they would be with a continuation of traditional Medicare” in the very first year that the GOP plan goes into effect:
They've got a chart illustrating how the costs would double in their post. And as they noted, Ryan's plan of course included a massive tax cut for the rich.
If this latest move by Republicans doesn't get more people out there rallying for and demanding a single payer system for everyone so we get the profit motive out of our health care costs in America, I'm not sure what does. The GOP just gave anyone that wants to run against their House members some very good material for political ads. I would love nothing better than to see every one of them that voted for this today ousted in the next election. I still have a hard time believing they were all suicidal enough to vote for Ryan's plan.