… And I’d like to take a moment to address this charge that I’ve cut Medicare by $716 billion, and by so doing reduced benefits to seniors.
First of all let me categorically state: this reduction in our Medicare expenditures does not come at the expense of any current or future benefits. Please understand that and also understand that anyone who says otherwise is not giving you the full truth.
Let me explain.
My opponent and I both agree that we need to do something to curtail the growth of Medicare spending. If we don’t make important changes the costs of healthcare for America’s seniors will bankrupt future generations. On this there can be no debate and it’s one of the many things that the governor and I agree on completely.
To that end, my administration negotiated and reached an agreement with healthcare providers and insurance companies that would reduce their reimbursements under Medicare by $716 billion. They were willing to accept this reduction because the additional coverage provided by Obamacare (I still do love that name) would benefit them. This is exactly the type of public / private partnership that Governor Romney has often said is beneficial.
So in summary:
- we agree that Medicare costs need to be reduced
- I made a reduction in those costs without cutting benefits
- I worked with businesses that were involved in the process and agreed to this reduction to everyone’s benefit
Let me be clear: we need to fix Medicare in order to fix our ailing healthcare system. We can’t continue to cast every cut in costs as a cut in benefits. We agree we have to cut costs – I want to do so without hurting our seniors and I have done so. Vilifying these reductions without giving people all of the facts makes our country weaker, not stronger and lessens our national debate on an important issue.
(just dreaming about rational debate vs. war of the soundbites. I know it’s too much to ask)