CBO Projections, Deficit Reduction Talk Causes Medicare Nerves
The need to take steps to reduce the federal deficit is leading some to experience "Medicare jitters."
The Washington Post: CBO Projects U.S. Budget Deficit To Reach $1.5 Trillion In 2011, Highest Ever
As the two sides bickered in dueling news conferences, a small band of senators from both parties was trying to heed Obama's call, with talks aimed at advancing a bipartisan blueprint for deficit reduction developed last month by Obama's fiscal commission. That blueprint goes far beyond cuts in domestic programs to tackle the biggest and fastest-growing parts of the federal budget, including cherished tax breaks such as the home mortgage interest deduction and popular entitlement programs such as Social Security and Medicare (Montgomery, 1/27).
The Hill: Obama Causes Medicare Jitters With Call For Deficit Reduction
President Obama's signal that he's open to more cuts to federal health programs during the State of the Union address earned him a scolding from the AARP, a key ally in getting his health care reform passed. Centrist Democrats, however, embraced the idea as key to avoid a debt crisis (Pecquet, 1/26).
National Journal: House GOP To Consider Move To Privatized Medicare
House Republicans are considering a measure to privatize Medicare that would be included in their alternative to President Obama's annual budget. House Republican Conference Chairman Jeb Hensarling of Texas said on Wednesday that he expects Republicans to support a provision to convert Medicare into a voucher system, which would effectively turn the government-backed health care program over to private insurers. Hensarling is the second-ranked Republican on the Budget Committee (DoBias, 1/27).