Republican Congressman Paul Ryan has presented his budget plan to eliminate Medicare as an opportunity for benefit for the next generation of senior citizens in the United States, arguing that, although seniors would no longer receive a guaranteed Medicare benefit, the private medical insurance industry would step in and help out.
The Congressional Budget Office, however, has conducted an analysis of Paul Ryan’s plan to move from Medicare to private, for-profit medical insurance, and concluded that Ryan’s plan would result in almost a 300 percent cost increase for senior citizens, who would go from paying just one quarter of their health care costs to paying almost three quarters of their health care costs.
Remarking on this astounding negative impact of the budget proposed by Paul Ryan, Representative Pete DeFazio asked, “How many people, how many seniors in this country–other than the people he pals around with on Wall Street and at the country club–but other than them, how many of them can afford to pay 68 percent of their health care costs? What middle class American can afford that in retirement no matter how prudent they’ve been their whole life, no matter how much money they’ve saved in their whole life? Very, very, very few.”
DeFazio continued, “We have here a plan to enrich the private health insurance industry, allow them to return to all of their bad old ways–recisions, pre-existing condition exclusions and all of that–so that the government can give them money. And he says this will save the government a lot of money. Well, it might, but it’s going to kill a lot of seniors or drive them into bankruptcy, just like the days before we had Medicare.”