Who cares what Romney proposes on Medicare?

Why does anyone really care about what Mitt Romney says about Medicare? After all his plan (really VP candidate Paul Ryan’s plan) doesn’t kick in for 10 years, only affects new Medicare entrants when it does, and would simply add another choice alongside today’s fee-for-service Medicare system.

Let’s face it, even if this plan were passed on the very busy Day 1 of a Romney presidency (which of course it won’t be), there would still be 10 years for opponents to mount a “repeal and replace” campaign along the lines of what ObamaCare foes have done for the last couple years. That’s 2+ presidential election cycles, so even if Romney were to serve two terms he still wouldn’t see his plan even start to be implemented.

I know many people consider the Ryan/Romney plan to be bold and frightening, but frankly I consider it timid and boring. We don’t have 10 years to start fixing Medicare, and older people should not be exempted from the changes. Nearly half of Medicare expenditures come from general taxation –and even those current retirees who paid Medicare contributions their whole life through the payroll tax didn’t come close to covering the real cost of Medicare.

An honest candidate would tell voters we can’t kick the Medicare can down the road but instead need to start dealing with it now. ObamaCare actually does take major steps to improve Medicare and control costs, while Romney’s proposal of abolishing ¬†ObamaCare and doing nothing for 10 years represents a big step backward.

October 5, 2012

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