‘Mediscare,’ Republican style
From Dana Milbank at the Washington Post
US needs higher tax on richest taxpayers
From Juan Williams at The Hill
Are Republicans ready to be trusted with the reins of power? If you’re thinking of answering this in the affirmative, you might want to pause long enough to learn what transpired on the third floor of the Capitol on Thursday. There, four prominent Republican lawmakers announced their proposal to abolish Medicare
— “sunset” was their pseudo-verb — even for those currently on the program or nearing retirement. In Medicare’s place would be a private plan that would raise the eligibility age and shift trillions of dollars worth of health-care coverage from the government to the elderly. “This will be the new Medicare,” Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.), the proposal’s author, announced.
In this political year, the No. 1 issue is the economy. And right behind it are arguments over the size of the federal debt and cutting government spending. Late last month, a poll from The Associated Press/Gfk asked Americans if they wanted to increase taxes or cut government services. Fifty-six percent said Congress should focus on cutting services to balance the budget, while 31 percent favored tax increases. Only 5 percent said the two should be done equally.
Why President Obama Is Doubling Down On Health Care
The Supreme Court is forcing his hand, and the contraception debate offers a political opening. But the legislation is still unpopular, and Republicans say they welcome the debate.
From Zeke Miller at Buzzfeed
President Obama’s re-election campaign has launched an all-out defense of his landmark, and unpopular, health care overhaul, a move that marks a realization: The issue can’t be avoided.
House GOP seeks political upper hand with 2013 budget proposal
From The Hill
President Obama’s aides promised Democrats they’d be rewarded in the 2010 midterms for what supporters call the Affordable Care Act and detractors label “ObamaCare.” When they were instead, as Obama said, shellacked in midterms, the White House sought repeatedly to change the subject and “pivoted” several times to the issue of jobs.
Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio), buffeted by a series of defeats and setbacks since December, is betting big on the budget. House Republicans will announce their 2013 spending blueprint this week, hoping to unite their fractious members around an election-year policy agenda.
Simply put, Boehner needs this one.