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Thu Dec 13, 2012, 12:09 PM

So President Obama is going to fight Pelosi and Reid on Medicare cuts? Not remotely likely

Both legislators are on the record strongly opposing any move to cut benefits. Neither is going to bother to even look at a proposal from the WH which raises the retirement age, so I'm not sure why there's still a question of what the President is going to 'agree to' in his 'fiscal cliff' negotiations with republicans. Why would he pick a fight with his own legislature? That just doesn't add up.

I'd look to what Reid and Pelosi say about an ultimate deal, before I'd ask what President Obama will ultimately support. All of the focus on the WH forgets that Congress will be crafting these bills, not the President. Expecting that he's going to go to Pelosi and Reid with a package that slashes benefits like the worst of the reports are speculating is to defy the political reality of the economic debate: that Congress is not only the most dynamic and vital arbiter of our budget process; they are the correct one -- both constitutionally and in our interest.

I expect that our Democrats in the House and Senate will defend and protect our social safety net as diligently as they've managed, so far. There's no Democratic revolt in the Capitol that I know of which would foretell of some abandonment in store of our social contract.

There's no reason to believe that the President is considering any of this either . . .

excerpt from President Obama's remarks at AARP Convention in September:

"There’s been a lot of talk about Medicare and Social Security in this campaign, as there should be. And these are bedrock commitments that America makes to its seniors, and I consider those commitments unshakeable. But given the conversations that have been out there in the political arena lately, I want to emphasize Medicare and Social Security are not handouts. You’ve paid into these programs your whole lives. You’ve earned them. And as President, it’s my job to make sure that Medicare and Social Security remain strong for today’s seniors and for future generations."

"It probably won’t surprise you, though, that there’s a lot of talk about Medicare and Social Security that hasn’t been completely on the level over the last several months. So here’s what you need to know:

I have strengthened Medicare as President. We’ve added years to the life of the program by getting rid of taxpayer subsidies to insurance companies that weren’t making people healthier. And we used those savings to lower prescription drug costs, and to offer seniors on Medicare new preventive services like cancer screenings and wellness services.

In fact, the health reform law we passed has already saved more than 5.5 million seniors and people with disabilities nearly $4.5 billion on their prescription drugs. Seniors who received a discount have saved an average of more than $600 this year alone. And over the next 10 years, we expect the average Medicare beneficiary to save nearly $5,000 as a result of this law . . .

Now, we do have to reform and strengthen Medicare for the long haul, but we’re going to do it by reducing the costs of care -- not by asking seniors to pay thousands of dollars more . . .

And when it comes to Social Security, we’ve got to keep the promise of Social Security by taking responsible steps to strengthen it, not by turning it over to Wall Street . . .


It's some kind of bizzaro-world attitude where we assume that the man who spent his first term defending, protecting, and enhancing our social safety net is, somehow, the same man some are now saying is bent on cutting holes in it. It just doesn't add up.

17 replies, 1104 views

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Arrow 17 replies Author Time Post
Reply So President Obama is going to fight Pelosi and Reid on Medicare cuts? Not remotely likely (Original post)
bigtree Dec 2012 OP
ProSense Dec 2012 #1
bigtree Dec 2012 #2
1StrongBlackMan Dec 2012 #3
zipplewrath Dec 2012 #9
John2 Dec 2012 #12
AnotherMcIntosh Dec 2012 #4
bigtree Dec 2012 #6
AnotherMcIntosh Dec 2012 #8
ProSense Dec 2012 #11
AnotherMcIntosh Dec 2012 #13
ProSense Dec 2012 #14
AnotherMcIntosh Dec 2012 #17
bigtree Dec 2012 #15
Liberal_Dog Dec 2012 #5
bigtree Dec 2012 #7
ProSense Dec 2012 #10
John2 Dec 2012 #16

Response to bigtree (Original post)

Thu Dec 13, 2012, 12:13 PM

1. It's a game the

RW and anti-Obama forces like to play: http://www.democraticunderground.com/?com=view_post&forum=1002&pid=1971656

Attribute a position to the President in the hopes that people become resigned to it.

Nancy Pelosi: "don’t even think about raising Medicare age"
http://www.democraticunderground.com/10021971920

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Response to ProSense (Reply #1)

Thu Dec 13, 2012, 12:38 PM

2. yeah , and more than a few persuaded by the nonsense

. . . it's a dynamic where the more virulently opposed you are, the less informed you become about your actual subject. They start shunning anything Obama-sourced or related and embracing the reams of negativity and cynicism.

On this issue, though, you'd think that an entire term of defending, enhancing, and protecting these programs would serve to define President Obama as an ally. It's a credit to that opposition that there's even a question.

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Response to bigtree (Reply #2)

Thu Dec 13, 2012, 12:45 PM

3. Kind'a ...

. . . it's a dynamic where the more virulently opposed you are, the less informed you become about your actual subject.


Reminds me of a certain group us Democrats/liberals/Progressives love to mock.

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Response to bigtree (Reply #2)

Thu Dec 13, 2012, 01:10 PM

9. Left overs from last year

Between the previous agreement he made to extend the tax cuts (and called those opposed "sanctimonious") and what people have been TOLD that he was offering last year (I'm dubious anyone really knows what he was actually willing to sign) one can understand the concern of some that Obama might be willing to extend the age, change the COLA, or make some other accomodation of that nature. But it is true that NO ONE except Bohner and Obama really know what is going on. It is down, right now, to a negotiation between those two. We lost public options, we got mandates, we extended tax cuts, we protected torturers, we kept Gates, we executed Bush's SOFA. This president has demonstrated that he's more than willing to deviate away from his base. Alternately, he's in a VERY strong position right now and there's no real reason to believe he would give something THAT LARGE up for what he's negotiating for. But ya never know.

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Response to bigtree (Reply #2)

Thu Dec 13, 2012, 01:25 PM

12. You are right

 

on this. It is a public relations game being played by the media and Republicans. It is the political example of conquer and divide. The Democratic Party right now is more unified that the Republican party. When the Democratic party is unified, they win politically because they are the majority party. Anything coming from Wall Street is bias, because they represent the views of Wall Street. If they presented me a Poll right now, I would throw it in the trash can, because you can manipulate a Poll to show what you want. Some people use Polls to influence Policies. Wall Street wants spending cuts, and they will be willing to give up a few tax hikes to destroy Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid. Wall Street Barons have never supported those programs. That is why they give so much money to Republicans. John Boehner has a lot of ties to Wall Street period, ever since he been in the Congress and so does Paul Ryan. That is the story not being told to the Public by the media.

They have a motive for draconian spending cuts. They see President Obama as a useful tool to help them do it because he is the leader of the Democratic Party. They see Obama as some kind of charismatic character and people within his party will just go along with him. It is the same way they saw the Election but miscalculated it. They don't think people who voted for the President voted for issues. So they have a disdain for our intelligence. President Obama can't just make deals on his own, unless the Democratic Senate or minority Democratic House goes along. He is in communication with the voters in his Party. The Democratic Senate and House is also. And I would submit, Blue Dogs like Blanche Lincoln was damage more from Democratic voters than Republicans in Arkansas. It is better to lose fighting beside your Base than betraying them. At least you know where they stand. Obama will not get co operation from the Congress people in his Party because that would be like asking them to commit suicide. Wall street and most in the pundit class live in ivory towers, because they don't understand the lives of ordinary Americans themselves. They have been pampered all their lives. That Chris Matthews for example, he don't understand why that FOX reporter got punched, but I do. that was nothing. You go out in every day America and get in people's face, you will get punched. It is not your Ivory Tower.

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Response to bigtree (Original post)

Thu Dec 13, 2012, 12:49 PM

4. The words he used shows that he was referring to "commitments that America makes to its seniors."

 

Seniors who have reached the eligibility age are safe.

He didn't say more than that.

He didn't say "commitments that America makes to its citizens."

You are welcome to extrapolate and believe that is what he said.

But he didn't.

If it is good enough for President Obama to say, ""There’s been a lot of talk about Medicare and Social Security ..., as there should be," shouldn't that be good enough for all others on this board?

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Response to AnotherMcIntosh (Reply #4)

Thu Dec 13, 2012, 12:53 PM

6. he didn't say a lot of things

. . . doesn't automatically make him a proponent of cuts to beneficiaries.

Talk about his actual record of support for these programs. Tell me how those defenses and enhancements square with the notion that he's ready to tear it all down.

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Response to bigtree (Reply #6)

Thu Dec 13, 2012, 01:08 PM

8. "his actual record of support for these programs"?

 

You mean like his signing of three let's-send-more-jobs-to-foreign-countries "free-trade" agreements with the result that our workers will have less wages and less funds to pay in to Social Security? You mean like his Administration's supporting of the pending TPP, the NAFTA of the Pacific?

Or do you mean like his payroll tax-cut which also has the effect of weaking SS by reducing the amount of funds paid in to the system?

No, you probably mean something other than that. Probably some talk from him. But nothing as clear as saying "I will not sign any Bill to raise the eligibility age" or anything equivalent to that.

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Response to AnotherMcIntosh (Reply #8)

Thu Dec 13, 2012, 01:24 PM

11. No,

"Or do you mean like his payroll tax-cut which also has the effect of weaking SS by reducing the amount of funds paid in to the system? "

...those are not facts. Social Security lost no funds from the deal.

Those sellouts Kucinich and Conyers voted to extend the payroll tax cut.

House Passes Payroll Tax Cut Extension

The House of Representatives on Friday passed the payroll tax cut extension and unemployment benefits package 293-132.

http://livewire.talkingpointsmemo.com/entries/house-passes-payroll-tax-cut-extension


Roll call: http://clerk.house.gov/evs/2012/roll072.xml

Also, what the hell do the free-trade agreements have to do with Medicare?

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Response to ProSense (Reply #11)

Thu Dec 13, 2012, 02:00 PM

13. Medicare is funded by worker contributions. When jobs are shipped to foreign countries with the

 

result that overall wages are lowered in this country, the contributions to Medicare are inherently lowered.

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Response to AnotherMcIntosh (Reply #13)

Thu Dec 13, 2012, 02:03 PM

14. What?

"When jobs are shipped to foreign countries with the result that overall wages are lowered in this country, the contributions to Medicare are inherently lowered."

What the hell does that have to do with raising the retirement age? Or are you just offering up a theory to justify RW bullshit?

Krugman: It’s Health Care Costs, Stupid
http://www.democraticunderground.com/10021922243



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Response to ProSense (Reply #14)

Thu Dec 13, 2012, 02:50 PM

17. That statement was made in response to post #6:

 

"he didn't say a lot of things
. . . doesn't automatically make him a proponent of cuts to beneficiaries.

"Talk about his actual record of support for these programs.


If you don't want any poster such as the one who posted at #6 to raise a question about Obama's support or lack of support for the SS and Medicare programs, you should inform that poster of that. If he won't post such questions, I will not respond to them.

If you want to confine a poster, such as the one who posted at #6, to only discuss the more narrow issue of raising the eligibility age, you should also inform him of that. Likewise, if such a poster will confine himself to the more narrow issue and not discuss the broader issue of whether Obama has or has not broadly supported SS and Medicate, I will do so as well.

You say that you don't understand. I believe you. The reason why you don't understand is because you spend two much time throwing out your standard talking points and insults instead of trying to comprehend what is being discussed. Obviously, you are not contributing to the discussion but are trying to disrupt it.

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Response to AnotherMcIntosh (Reply #8)

Thu Dec 13, 2012, 02:06 PM

15. well, that's certainly a diverting argument of yours

from Medicare to NAFTA to taxes? . . . and you expect me to follow your diversion with a response about the administration and Medicare? What a deceptive game.

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Response to bigtree (Original post)

Thu Dec 13, 2012, 12:50 PM

5. Uh...

Pelosi rejects extending Bush-era tax cuts
House speaker says high-end cuts have boosted deficit

July 22, 2010|Robert Schroeder, MarketWatch

WASHINGTON (MarketWatch) -- Democratic leaders won't back an extension of tax cuts for the wealthiest Americans, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said Thursday, even as two more Senate Democrats were calling for extending tax cuts for all earners.

Asked at her weekly news conference if Democratic leaders are willing to consider extending the cuts, Pelosi replied: "No. Our position has been that we support middle-income tax cuts."

http://articles.marketwatch.com/2010-07-22/economy/30736087_1_tax-cuts-tax-rate-tax-increases


How did that one work out again?

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Response to Liberal_Dog (Reply #5)

Thu Dec 13, 2012, 01:00 PM

7. i guess that reasoning works if you block out everything else that was occuring at the time

. . . and ignore what's actually happening right now.

Besides, Taxes -- Medicare. Completely unrelated. Yours is a circular argument for folks who've already decided that the President is some opponent of Medicare and the other safety net social programs. Nothing in his term reflects that, though, so we're left with the wild and unsubstantiated speculation. That's a game for fools.

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Response to Liberal_Dog (Reply #5)

Thu Dec 13, 2012, 01:14 PM

10. Here's how

"How did that one work out again?"

...it worked out: just like the RW wanted it to.

The RW repeats its distortions over and over, attempting to convince gullible people. Democrats spend a lot of time countering the lies, but are constantly portrayed as sellouts by some. Gullible people are convinced.

In 2010, Republicans successfully used the "Obama cut Medicare" lie.

Oh, and for all those older Americans who voted GOP last year because those nasty Democrats were going to cut Medicare, I have just one word: suckers!

http://krugman.blogs.nytimes.com/2011/04/04/privatizing-medicare/

People didn't buy it during the 2012 campaign because Democrats successfully presented the facts.

Just 4 weeks ago, Republicans were blaming Democrats for cutting $716 billion from Medicare.
http://www.democraticunderground.com/10021930783

Yes, Mitt was pushing the same tired argument hoping for a repeat: sucker!

Advocacy works a lot better than pushing false equivalencies.



What the millionaires want versus what the voters want
http://www.dailykos.com/story/2012/12/07/1162018/-What-the-millionaires-want-versus-what-the-voters-want

In 2010, it worked out for Republicans:

Republicans reap the fruits of redistricting
http://www.democraticunderground.com/10021971150

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Response to ProSense (Reply #10)

Thu Dec 13, 2012, 02:06 PM

16. This is very

 

well illustrated. President Obama was re-elected with this mandate. He has no permission to deviate or compromise. Wall Street did not elect him but they are trying their best to drown us out. In this day and age of communication, they will mot have an advantage. The results of the Election showed how sophisticated those communications are. And the Governor of Michigan made a mistake. He will be made an example of in the next election. They fired the first shot across the vowel in 2014, but the last one will be ours. The best Polls to go by are the exit day Polls and not some manipulated Polls by Wall Street during the interim. The Dems do have their internal Polls. Our operations are more accurate and sophiscated, because they get direct communications on the ground. That airwaves stuff is out dated.

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