Obama, Romney Trade More Medicare Barbs


Topics: Medicare, Politics

Aug 27, 2012

President Barack Obama went on the Medicare attack, using his weekly address to challenge Republican charges that he cut Medicare. Obama also launched a new ad saying that the Romney-Ryan ticket would end Medicare as it exists today. But the Romney campaign has Medicare messages of its own.

Politico: President Obama On Offense Over Medicare
President Barack Obama went on the offense against Republican charges that he has cut Medicare in his weekly address released Saturday. “As president, my goal has been to strengthen these programs now, and preserve them for future generations,” Obama said. “Today’s seniors deserve that same peace of mind. And the millions of Americans who are working hard right now deserve to know that the care they need will be available when they need it” (Tau, 8/25).

CBS News: Obama Promises To Protect Medicare From GOP
On a proclaimed mission to dispel “accusations and misinformation flying around” in a fight that’s rapidly accelerated since Rep. Paul Ryan‘s appointment to the GOP presidential ticket, President Obama in his weekly address vowed to protect the Medicare benefits his Affordable Care Act promises seniors. Trumpeting news this week from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services that under his health care law, 5.4 million seniors on Medicare have saved more than $4.1 billion on prescription drugs, the president laid out other successes of his program, including 18 million seniors who have taken advantage of preventive care benefits like cancer screenings (Boerma, 8/25).

Politico: Obama’s Second, Harder Medicare Attack
On the eve of the Republican National Convention in senior citizen-heavy Florida, the Obama campaign has unveiled another negative ad saying that a Romney-Ryan administration would represent “an end to the Medicare promise” (Burns, 8/25).

National Journal: Report Gives Obama New Weapon Against Romney In Medicare Wars
President Obama has sought to win over older voters by warning them that Mitt Romney‘s plan for Medicare would cost them an extra $6,400 a year in health premiums. Now, the liberal Center for American Progress has armed Obama with even scarier-sounding numbers to attack the proposal to repeal the 2010 health care law and pass the 2012 House Republican budget, the brainchild of Romney’s running mate, Rep. Paul Ryan of Wisconsin. The new $6,400: $59,500. According to the center’s calculations, a senior who turns 65 in 2023, the first year of the proposed Medicare reforms, would end up paying that sum in additional premium dollars over a lifetime, as the costs of insurance diverge from the value of a government-provided payment (Sanger-Katz, 8/24).

The Hill (Video): Obama TV Ad Says Romney Would Break ‘The Medicare Promise’
The Obama campaign continued its Medicare offensive in a new television ad set to run in five swing states on Saturday, claiming Mitt Romney would end “the Medicare promise.” “You work hard, pay in. Your Medicare benefits are guaranteed,” the narrator says in the ad. “But Mitt Romney would break that promise” (Easley, 8/25).

Meanwhile, Romney ads offer their own Medicare messages –

CNN: New Romney Ad Continues Medicare Barrage On Obama
A television advertisement released by Mitt Romney’s presidential campaign on the eve of the GOP convention is the fifth in the past two weeks focused on Medicare, the health care entitlement program for seniors. President Barack Obama and Romney have sparred over their plans for the program in a series of ads – primarily from the Republican challenger – and on the campaign trail. Like the other spots, this ad includes a claim that, “As president, Barack Obama cut $700 billion from Medicare to pay for Obamacare” (Wallace, 8/26).

The Hill: Romney TV Ad Uses Obama ’08 Remarks To Push Back On Medicare
Mitt Romney is pressing his attacks over President Obama’s changes to Medicare in a new ad which uses his Democratic opponent’s own words from the 2008 campaign. The new television ad uses a clip of Obama hammering then GOP opponent Sen. John McCain for proposing reductions to Medicare spending (Mali, 8/26).

Also, the New York Times takes a look at private Medicare plans, which have been a flashpoint on the campaign trail –

The New York Times: Despite Democrats’ Warnings, Private Medicare Plans Find Success
Even as President Obama accuses Mitt Romney and Representative Paul D. Ryan of trying to privatize and “voucherize” Medicare, his administration crows about the success of private health plans in delivering prescription drug benefits and other services to Medicare beneficiaries. More than a quarter of the 50 million beneficiaries receive coverage through private Medicare Advantage plans, mostly health maintenance organizations, and Medicare’s drug benefits are delivered exclusively by private insurers, subsidized by the government. Obama administration officials, lawmakers from both parties and beneficiaries have generally been satisfied with the private plans (Pear, 8/25).

This is part of Kaiser Health News’ Daily Report – a summary of health policy coverage from more than 300 news organizations. The full summary of the day’s news can be found here and you can sign up for e-mail subscriptions to the Daily Report here. In addition, our staff of reporters and correspondents file original stories each day, which you can find on our home page.

Senate Dems Protest Medicare Cuts

Senate Dems Protest Medicare Cuts (Photo credit: Talk Radio News Service)

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