Obamacare is the law of the land. … We’re going to be living with Obamacare for the foreseeable future.” – Paul Ryan
That was the speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives after pulling the GOP health care bill from consideration because it was clear there weren’t enough votes to pass it.
The Associated Press sums up the range of emotion after the decision was announced: After health care bill’s withdrawal, elation and anger. It also points out the “winners, losers and a few in between.”
It’s time to bone up on Republican proposals for overhauling Medicare and Medicaid, and how they compare with the Democrat’s alternatives.
Mitt Romney’s selection of Paul D. Ryan as his running mate ensures that both government programs – as well as Social Security, a topic for a future post – will be front and center in the presidential contest. And it’s our job, as journalists, is to help the public make sense of what’s at stake.
Political reporters will write about the horse race between candidates at the national, state and local level; your challenge is to write about older Americans and how they would be affected by the policies discussed.
Today, I’ll point you toward some resources that might be of help.
Keep in mind there are very few truly impartial sources of information in this overheated political environment. Carefully weigh and balance the information that comes your way and consider the positions of organizations releasing data or offering commentary.
You’ll perform a valuable service if you help readers understand how to think about the debates over Medicare and Medicaid that are sure to unfold over the next several months.
A note of caution is in order: Although Ryan’s positions on Medicare and Medicaid are well documented, Romney has not embraced those policies. When Romney makes his policy stance clear, that will be news. But don’t make any assumptions about what the presumptive Republican nominee is going to do before he makes it very clear just what that is. Continue reading