Both parties have been banging the Medicare drum for the 2012 cycle, each with misleading claims about the other party’s plans. Smith’s ad accuses Casey of voting to cut $716 billion from Medicare when he supported Obamacare. However, that $716 billion would affect providers, not beneficiaries. And, Smith has voice support for Rep. Paul Ryan’s budget, which leaves the exact same $716 billion out of Medicare.
Likewise, Democratic claims – including those made by Casey about Smith – give the false impression that the GOP budget would affect current beneficiaries.
While it’s superficially true that current beneficiaries could choose to stay in traditional Medicare, you need to look at what’s going to happen to traditional Medicare under the RyanCare plan Tom Smith likes.
Basically, private insurers are going to pick the meat off the bones of traditional Medicare, cherrypicking the healthiest people out of Medicare, and rejecting the most expensive-to-treat folks. With sicklier people left in the Medicare risk pool, premiums are going to increase for current beneficiaries.
Every aspect of the Republican plan is designed to make staying in traditional Medicare more expensive. Shifting more people into private insurance is a massive cost shift onto individuals, and so is the voucher proposal.
Even though Republicans talk about exempting current seniors from the voucher plan, it’s simply false to say that current seniors won’t be affected.