Michele Bachmann and the GOP’s Anti-Medicare Bluff
Posted on Apr 30, 2011
On Friday, ultraconservative free-market booster Michele Bachmann (R-Minn.) suddenly came out as a supporter of government-run Medicare. But this potential presidential candidate’s break with the official Republican Party line was not surprising. The GOP has been under attack by its own base for the past few weeks, ever since House Republicans voted to pass the radical Paul Ryan budget “reform” bill, which would double the cost of health care for seniors, among a lot of other nasty things. As they are being berated by their own constituents at town hall meetings all across America, right-wingers are simply trying to minimize the damage and figure out a way to backtrack on their plan to privatize Medicare and Medicaid without looking like the political frauds that they are.
You can rest assured that, right now, some of the best political minds in America are working to solve this problem. —YL
The Raw Story:
The tea party darling, an unabashed supporter of hard-right causes, took to the conservative blog RedState.com on Thursday to sound off on the tax-cutting virtues of House Budget Chairman Paul Ryan’s (R-WI) proposal—and then she reminded people how much she values Medicare, the government-run, single payer health insurance program for seniors.
“I supported that budget blueprint, though I’ve expressed caution about how we approach the issue of Medicare,” Bachmann wrote. “We must keep our promises to those who receive Medicare benefits, and those who are nearing the age of Medicare eligibility. Our challenge is to reduce the soaring amounts that government spends on health care, without burdening those who are most vulnerable.”
The words are a notable departure from the traditional Republican talking points about the Ryan proposal. GOP lawmakers from top to bottom have insisted the privatization plan will “save” Medicare, and that the new “premium support” subsidies will leave seniors with health insurance plans that are as good as what members of Congress enjoy (a disputed claim).
AP / Jim Cole