Paul Ryan not sure on Obamacare replacement specifics, but guarantees that Medicare is toast
Nov 14, 2016 11:50am EST by Joan McCarter
Donald Trump says he’s leaning more toward amending Obamacare rather than replacing it, keeping the provisions that are popular. Following up on that pronouncement from Friday, he told Leslie Stahl on 60 Minutes that no one would suffer in the gap between repealing and replacing (yeah, before he said no repeal).
“We’re going to do it simultaneously. It’ll be just fine. That’s what I do. I do a good job. You know, I mean, I know how to do this stuff. We’re going to repeal it and replace it. And we’re not going to have, like, a two-day period and we’re not going to have a two-year period where there’s nothing,” he said. “It will be repealed and replaced. I mean, we’ll know. And it’ll be great health care for much less money.”
Which is kind of news to House Speaker Paul Ryan, who still doesn’t really have a plan, and who says
“I’m not going to get into hypotheticals about legislation that hasn’t even been drafted yet.” That was in a response to whether contraception coverage was going to continue. Ryan might not be ready to tell women they’re out of luck, but he’s pretty damned clear about one thing: Medicare is over.
Paul Ryan has been pushing to phase out Medicare and replace it with private insurance for several years. But now it’s real with unified Republican government. He just said he will try to rush it through early next year while repealing Obamacare. […]
Ryan says current beneficiaries will be allowed to keep their Medicare. Says. But after the cord is cut between current and future beneficiaries, everything is fair game. For those entering the system, Ryan proposes phasing out Medicare and replacing it [with] private insurance with subsidies to help seniors afford the private insurance. That is unquestionably what it means because that is what Ryan says. So if you’re nearing retirement and looking forward to going on Medicare, good luck. You’re going to get private insurance but you’ll get some subsidies from the government to pay the bill.
Actually, I wouldn’t count on those subsidies for very long. In the past, Trump has been completely hands-off on Medicare, expressing the clear understanding that it’s a really popular program, and ending it would make Republicans really unpopular. So here’s the question for the president-elect: is he going to let Ryan call the shots on this and end up being the president that made the olds turn on Republicans forever?