How Mitt Romney's new plan would change Social Security and Medicare
Mitt Romney unveiled his fiscal plan to a tea party-aligned group Friday. It would cut some federal programs, and it could mean significant changes in Social Security and Medicare.
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Similarly, Romney indicates a gradualism on Medicare.Skip to next paragraph
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“First, Medicare should not change for anyone in the program or soon to be in it,” he said in his speech Friday. “We should honor our commitments to our seniors.”
“Tomorrow’s seniors should have the freedom to choose what their health coverage looks like,” he continued. “Younger Americans today, when they turn 65, should have a choice between traditional Medicare and other private health-care plans that provide at least the same level of benefits ... as with Social Security, the eligibility age should slowly increase to keep pace with increases in longevity.”
Many of the details in Romney’s plan are yet to be revealed, but his political competitors were quick to weigh in.
“He pandered to interest groups and offered timid reforms to government spending, all the while trying to convince voters he will magically balance the budget anyway,” said Tim Miller, the campaign spokesman of Jon Huntsman Jr., in a statement. “Governor Romney's plan that protects subsidies, the Defense Department, and nibbles around the edges on entitlements leaves no doubt that he has no realistic plan or intention to honestly balance the budget.”
Rick Perry’s campaign took the occasion to note Romney’s support for the 2008 Wall Street bailout, the subject of Mr. Perry’s latest YouTube video attacking Romney.
"Any proposal from Mitt Romney to reduce government spending that does not end government bailouts is not a serious plan to reduce government spending," said Perry spokesman Ray Sullivan in an e-mail to reporters.
Obama’s reelection campaign jumped in as well.
“Mitt Romney’s proposal … places a great burden on the middle class and the elderly, and instead of asking all Americans to do their fair share it continues to offer special breaks for large corporations, millionaires, and billionaires,” said Obama for America press secretary Ben LaBolt in a statement.
“Much of Mitt Romney’s plan is a carbon copy of the House Republicans’ budget,” Mr. LaBolt emphasized, tying Romney to Ryan. “It would wipe out investments essential to creating jobs and promoting growth and would leave millions of older Americans to fend for themselves by privatizing Medicare.”
In a web video, the Democratic National Committee said Romney’s plan would seriously hurt middle-class families, saying the plan was something "only a billionaire could love."
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