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PolitiFact 2011: How Ryan’s Plan Would Work

This is the section of the PolitiFact article that explains how the Ryan Plan would work:

Lie of the Year 2011: ‘Republicans voted to end Medicare’

By Bill Adair, Angie Drobnic Holan | Tuesday December 20, 2011

How the Ryan plan would work

Under the current Medicare system, the government pays the health care bills for Americans over age 65. Under the Ryan plan, future beneficiaries would be given a credit and invited to shop for an approved plan on a Medicare health insurance exchange. It received overwhelming support from Republicans in a House vote on a budget blueprint.

Meanwhile, Obama’s latest "budget blueprint" did not get a single vote from even a single Democrat in Congress.

Starting in 2022, beneficiaries would receive "premium support payments" from the government to help pay for the private insurance. People who need more health care would get a little more money, and high earners would get a little less.

The plan has some guarantees for coverage, although seniors would have to pay more to get the benefits they receive today, according to an analysis completed earlier this year by the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office (CBO).

The guarantees: Ryan’s plan requires private insurers to accept all applicants and to charge the same rate for people who are the same age. The plans would comply with standards set by the U.S. Office of Personnel Management, which administers the health plans of federal employees. The Medicare eligibility age would rise from 65 to 67, an idea that has received some bipartisan support in the past.

The CBO found that it would save the government money. But it does so by asking future Medicare beneficiaries to pay more for the same benefits.

Ryan says the plan would offer more choice for Medicare participants and increase competition among private insurers to drive down cost…

Competition always drives the price of anything down. Are we supposed to believe that without doing anything Medicare costs aren’t going to go up?

It’s not the first time it’s been suggested that Medicare be changed from its current fee-for-service, where the government pays all the bills, to one that uses private insurers. In the past, some Democrats have even favored such proposals, especially if — unlike the Ryan plan — the support was linked to medical inflation, or there were an option for traditional Medicare, or there were more explicit protections for consumers.

Just last week, Ryan agreed to a new framework with Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Ore. Their proposal uses Ryan’s idea for private insurers and exchanges, but it leaves traditional Medicare as an option.

In other words, Ryan’s plan has been favored by some Democrats in the past. (And Ryan himself says his plan has bipartisan origins, with its roots being in the Clinton Medicare Commission of the late 1990s.) And, moreover, Ryan has agreed to adopt a new framework which is co-authored by a Democrat.

Private insurers already offer Medicare plans under the program Medicare Advantage, though those plans have proven more expensive than traditional Medicare, not less.

Except that Obama is guts Medicare Advantage to help pay for Obama-Care. (And why he is spending $8 billion dollars so as not to have tell the seniors who will be affected before the elections.)

The partisan split on health care reveals the contradictions of congressional debate. Republicans were staunchly against the insurance exchanges in the federal health care law. But they endorsed them in the Ryan proposal, even as Democrats switched to oppose the plan.

Which is the real irony here.

"Ryan basically proposed the Affordable Care Act for future seniors," said Jonathan Gruber, an economist at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, who advised both President Obama and Republican Mitt Romney on health care. "I don’t understand how you can like it for future seniors but not like it for today’s needy uninsured. That doesn’t make any sense."

John Gruber is the person most point to as the real father of Obama-Care. And even he sees the irony of opposing exchanges for Medicare while pushing them on the uninsured.

Of course, the truth is, the Obama administration only sees these exchanges as a way station on the way to a single payer, government run system. They have gone out of their way to make sure that the exchanges fails.

For instance, by not including any funding mechanism in them apart from the states. 27 of whom don’t even want Obama-Care.

This article was posted by Steve on Monday, August 13th, 2012. Comments are currently closed.

4 Responses to “PolitiFact 2011: How Ryan’s Plan Would Work”

  1. GetBackJack says:

    Quote of the deace –

    “Wanna know what will finally kill Medicare? Medicare.”

    • GetBackJack says:

      I’m really sorry about my occasionally misspelled words. It’s a vision thing. I only have one eye and believe it or not depth perception plays a part in hitting the correct keys and execrably small HTML type faces I can barely see …. and the enormous volume of liquor I have to drink. To make the world seem normal. You know how it is ….

  2. BannedbytheTaliban says:

    The big difference between the two exchange programs is the source of funding. The Medicare exchanges are funded by a direct tax paid by the recipient to be given back in the form of a credit (albeit a means tested allotment apparently). The Obamacare exchanges are funded by taxing the middle class, small businesses, and the evil rich to redistribute wealth to the so-called poor.

  3. Right of the People says:

    It’s obvious that Obamacare’s main goal is to wreck the insurance companies bringing about a single payer system where the government can control the masses like they do in England.

    I don’t know if anybody is aware but over in the UK they have a restriction on how much aspirin, ibuprofen etc at one time. You’re restricted to 64 tablets at a time supposedly to keep people from “abusing” pain meds. I sprained my knee last year when we were visiting my daughter and when I went to the drug store to buy some ibuprofen they would only sell me 32 “extra strength” Advil. My wife had to go back nearly every other day just to get enough.

    I don’t want that nanny state crap here!

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