NY Election May Offer View Of Voters’ Take On GOP Medicare Plan
Just as this New York special congressional election approaches, news outlets analyze how public opinion is breaking in regard to the plan, as included in the budget advanced by Rep. Paul Ryan, R-Wis. Other elected officials are also offering their own responses to the approach.
The Washington Post: NY Race Is Referendum On GOP Medicare Plan
Special congressional elections tend to be sleepy affairs, campaigns so condensed and out of step with the normal political calendar that they're often missed. But they can be mirrors of the national moment, too, and that's what's happening in the suburbs of Buffalo and Rochester, where a race to fill a vacant U.S. House seat has turned into a referendum on the Republican plan to overhaul Medicare (Rucker, 5/15).
The Hill: GOP's Big Medicare Gamble
Republicans on Capitol Hill may be in the process of learning a hard lesson: Meddling with Medicare, whatever the nation's fiscal circumstances, just isn't popular. They are feeling the heat now because of House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan's (R-Wis.) controversial plan to turn Medicare into a type of voucher system. Presented as a serious attempt to fix the program's projected shortfalls, the proposal instead appears to have turned the political tide back toward the congressional Democrats, who were on the ropes after last November's midterms. Fifty-three percent of voters recently surveyed by The Hill said they would not accept any reduction in Medicare benefits even if doing so would help get the national debt and federal deficits under control (Pecquet and Cusack, 5/15).
Des Moines Register: Harkin, Boswell Blast Medicare Voucher Idea
Sen. Tom Harkin and Rep. Leonard Boswell took a populist tone during an event at a downtown Des Moines apartment building for seniors and people with disabilities. The House Republican budget - known as the "Ryan budget" after its architect, Rep. Paul Ryan of Wisconsin - would effectively eliminate Medicare as it now exists and replace it with a voucher system for private insurance that would mean higher out-of-pocket costs for consumers, Harkin and Boswell said (Forgrave, 5/16).
The Connecticut Mirror: CT House Members Have Medicare On The Mind
Expect a lot of talk from Connecticut's congressional delegation this coming week about Medicare. But the chatter might focus more on the House Republican plan to privatize the program, rather than the threats to Medicare's long-term solvency. ... On Monday, Chris Murphy, the 5th District congressman and U.S. Senate hopeful, will be holding a town hall meeting in Meridan with Barbara Kennelly, the former Connecticut congresswoman who now heads the National Committee to Preserve Social Security and Medicare, a Washington advocacy group (Shesgreen, 5/13).
In other Capitol Hill news -
The Hill: Trial Lawyers Target Only Dem To Support Malpractice Bill
The trial lawyers' lobby is hitting Rep. Jim Matheson (D-Utah) over his vote in favor of a medical malpractice bill that would pre-empt part of his state's constitution. The American Association for Justice is targeting lawmakers who voted to override either their state constitutions or rulings by their state supreme courts by supporting the malpractice bill. In addition to falling into that category, Matheson is the only Democrat who supported the measure when it passed the House Energy and Commerce Committee last week (Baker, 5/13).