Categorized | Senate News Briefing

Democrats’ Latest Plan For Budget, Medicare: Do Nothing

With our nation facing a serious debt crisis, it seems that Democrats in Congress have come together on a strategy to address it: do nothing. The Washington Post wrote Saturday, “Senate Democrats have adopted a minimalist agenda. They have blocked bills from the GOP-led House but proposed few broad ideas of their own — hoping to keep vulnerable incumbents from having to make controversial decisions before the 2012 elections. This predicament has altered the way those Democrats are selling themselves. They spent the previous two years fighting for really big things — national health-care reform, changing the way Wall Street works, approving an economic stimulus package worth more than $800 billion. Now, they are trying to do next to nothing and still have it look good.”


Today, ranking Republican on the Budget Committee, Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-AL), and Sen. Kelly Ayotte (R-NH), sent a letter signed by all 47 Republican senators to Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV), saying, “It has now been 754 days since the Senate last passed a budget. We have less than six months remaining until the start of the new fiscal year and the Senate has yet to produce a basic budget plan to substantively address our grave fiscal crisis. . . . Last year, Congress failed to pass a budget, failed to pass any of the twelve annual appropriations bills, and failed the nation by recklessly funding the government on a series of short-term spending bills. The Senate cannot make the same mistake again.”


And yet, The Washington Post reported last week, “Senate Democrats decided Thursday not to release their spending plan to counter the budget blueprint approved last month by House Republicans, saying they will wait to see whether talks at the White House produce a compromise plan for reining in the national debt.” In fact, according to the Los Angeles Times, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid said it would be ‘foolish’ for Democrats to propose their own federal budget for 2012, despite continued attacks from Republicans that the party is ducking its responsibility to put forward a solution to the nation’s deficit problems. ‘There’s no need to have a Democratic budget in my opinion,’ Reid said in an interview Thursday. ‘It would be foolish for us to do a budget at this stage.’”


Meanwhile, Democrats also seem to have also decided that now is the time to do nothing about the ever-increasing costs of Medicare.


Barely a week ago, the AP reported, “The bad economy is worsening the already-shaky finances of Medicare and Social Security, draining the trust funds supporting them faster than expected and intensifying the need for Congress to shore up the massive benefit programs, the government said Friday. Both Medicare and Social Security are being hit by a double whammy: the long-anticipated wave of retiring baby boomers and weaker-than-expected tax receipts, according to the annual report by the trustees who oversee the programs. The Medicare hospital insurance fund for seniors is now projected to run out of money in 2024, five years earlier than last year’s estimate.”


But last Thursday, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) told liberal Washington Post blogger Greg Sargent, “We have a plan. It’s called Medicare.” She added, “We gave the blueprint for how we strengthen Medicare in the Affordable Care Act . . . .” Except her health care bill cut $500 billion from Medicare and will not contain costs.


Still, some Democrats seem satisfied doing nothing. According to National Review Online’s Andrew Stiles, “Sen. Jay Rockefeller (D., W.Va.) said that by passing the health-care reform law — a ‘noble work’ — Democrats had ‘solved virtually all problems.’ ‘It’s good plan,’ he said. ‘Stick with the plan.’”


On Fox News Sunday yesterday, Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell said that doing nothing is not an option: “Medicare is in trouble.  Several of the President’s own cabinet members who make up the trustees of Medicare and Social Security declared last week that we’ve got to change Medicare and change it quickly.  The president would do that, too.  He would do it with a board to ration health care. So, let’s just stipulate that nobody is trying to throw grandma off the cliff.  Medicare is in serious trouble, serious trouble, and soon.  The President would ration care, which will adversely impact grandma. We’re going to have to change Medicare and it’s going to happen soon. It’s going to happen in connection with talks with the Vice President that are going on right now and it’s going to happen in connection with raising the debt ceiling which the President has asked to us do.”

Senate News Briefing

About Tom White

Tom is a US Navy Veteran, owns an Insurance Agency and is currently an IT Manager for a Virginia Distributor. He has been published in American Thinker, currently writes for the Richmond Examiner as well as Virginia Right! Blog. Tom lives in Hanover County, Va and is involved in politics at every level and is a Recovering Republican who has finally had enough of the War on Conservatives in progress with the Leadership of the GOP on a National Level.

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Tom White Says:

Nothing is more conservative than a republican wanting to get their majority back. And nothing is more liberal than a republican WITH a majority.

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