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Bush Didn’t Need Medicare To Win
EIB ^ | 12/3/03 | Rush

Posted on 12/03/2003 4:08:01 PM PST by Tumbleweed_Connection

RUSH: Another story from The Hill, Capitol Hill newspaper, headline: "Democrats seek way to retake Medicare initiative in '04." Just as I thought, this Medicare business is not over.

"Democrats are developing a strategy to alter last month's Medicare legislation and chip away at the political victory Republicans in the White House won in passing it. The strategery relies on seasoned citizens disliking the reforms once they understand the details." Immediately after the Senate vote, Senate minority leader Tom Daschle said, ‘We are confident that seniors are, uh, Tim, are going to ask the Congress to revisit this issue very soon. Already we've seen plenty of indication, seniors, as they look more closely at this legislation, uh, will find what people who are looking at the Boeing tanker deal with found, and they'll want it fixed.’

“David Smith, a spokesman for Senator Kennedy, said that a key for reclaiming the offensive on Medicare would be to educate seniors on what the bill is and what it isn't. Democrats will try to take pieces of the legislation and repeal them, while adding new provisions to the bill. Chances of this are seen as slim because Republicans control Congress.”

Doesn't matter. They're still going to try it. They said they were going to fix this. In fact, one of the predictions I made early on when Senator Kennedy would eventually have to sign off on this and then he would go about fixing it, which means spending even more. "Democrats will most likely seek to add language on drug re-importation, which has drawn bipartisan support in the House. The bill allows re-importation from Canada if the Health and Human Services secretary certifies the safety of the drugs, something neither the current administration nor the previous one has been willing to countenance.

And then amendment efforts are, therefore, attractive to Democrats, less for the hope of changing policy than for retrieving Medicare as an election issue for the party. High on the Democrats' list is addressing a prescription drug prices, Jon Corzine said after passage of the bill. The Democrats would seek to eliminate a provision that would prevent the Department of Health and Human Services from using its purchasing power to reduce drug prices. The Democrats also want to point to the benefits structure of the legislation to show that seasoned citizens have to spend a lot of money before reaping the benefits of the prescription drug plan."

We did that already with our example of an 80-year-old man and his Viagra. We've already done this. Democrats are once again following our lead. Now, you know, I'll tell you what's going to happen here. The Republicans may have won this issue for a couple of election cycles but in the long-term, mid- to long-term, this entitlement is going to grow out of control in terms of ever-expanding coverage and open-ended expenses and what really frustrates me is that none of this was necessary. This wasn't needed, it wasn't demanded, and Bush was going to win or lose without it. He didn't need this to win reelection. And you watch, by the time Democrats are going to be back in control someday, and they're going to go in there, and they're going to quote, unquote, fix this, and it's going to be even worse than it is, and it's not good now.

Well, all right, it has been suggested to me, ladies and gentlemen, that before the Democrats get back in power and get back in there and start tinkering with this that the Republicans should accuse - since the Democrats have done this, they're going to seek ways to retake the Medicare initiative in '04 and they're going to warn senior citizens of all this horror that's in this bill. What the Republicans ought to do is start running some commercials that accuse the Democrats of trying to cut the prescription drug benefit. Just counter it. You know, if the Democrats are going to go in there and try to screw this thing up, it's time for some commercials. The Democrats have said they want to cut the prescription drug benefit in Medicare. They want to make seniors choose between their new prescription drug benefit and eating dog food. And then they say, you know, the last line of the commercial would be, "The Democrats want the prescription drug benefit to wither on the vine." That might be a fun way of combating. You think our guys will do this? No, but it's fun to think about it.

TOPICS: Business/Economy; Culture/Society; Editorial; Government; Politics/Elections
KEYWORDS: medicare

1 posted on 12/03/2003 4:08:02 PM PST by Tumbleweed_Connection
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To: Tumbleweed_Connection
Daschle said, ‘We are confident that seniors are, uh, Tim, are going to ask the Congress to revisit this issue very soon.

Four hundred billion just can't be enough, can it? Why don't we just split the entire national treasury between everyone over the age of 65, legal and illegal. Hell, let's include all of Mexico, Canada, and whatever country wants in on it. Open up Ft. Knox, auction off the armed forces, sell all the federal land, and throw that in as well.

2 posted on 12/03/2003 4:17:06 PM PST by struwwelpeter
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To: struwwelpeter
Please.. its mostly a handout to drug companies. The hill GOP should be concerned with getting a good deal for the government on drugs. It isn't right that drugs cost more here than anywhere else in the world, and that the biggest purchaser (the government) makes no effort to negotiate itself a better deal because that might piss off pfizer and merck.
3 posted on 12/03/2003 4:22:33 PM PST by fiscally_right
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To: Tumbleweed_Connection
You know, I wish he hadn't spent the money. But he promised a drug perscription program, and by dingies, the man does what he says.

Lots of us voted for him, even after he promised this thing. So how can we complain when he keeps his promises?

Would we rather have Bill Clinton?

4 posted on 12/03/2003 4:50:57 PM PST by narby
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To: Tumbleweed_Connection
Probably doesnt need gun owners and NRA types either?.....
5 posted on 12/03/2003 5:33:24 PM PST by joesnuffy (Moderate Islam Is For Dilettantes)
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To: narby
He didn't promise this. He promised a program for poor seniors. This is a universal entitlement.
6 posted on 12/03/2003 10:53:35 PM PST by The Old Hoosier (Right makes might.)
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