Steve Benen reports on the impressive clarity of Team Romney-Ryan on Medicare:
Mitt Romney, yesterday, asked about Paul Ryan’s Medicare plan: “[M]y plan for Medicare, it’s very similar to his plan for Medicare.”
Romney surrogate John Sununu, this morning, asked about the similarities in Romney’s Medicare plan to Paul Ryan’s policy: “But it’s very different.”
I’m glad we got this straightened out. Here I thought the Romney-Ryan campaign might have a muddled message on the issue they’ve put at the center of the 2012 presidential race.
To help clarify matters, Romney’s policy director, Lanhee Chen, told TPM, “Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan have always been fully committed to repealing Obamacare, ending President Obama’s $716 billion raid on Medicare and tackling the serious fiscal challenges our country faces.”
Except, as even the most ignorant policy directors surely know, every penny of savings Obama found in Medicare has been included in Paul Ryan’s budget, which Romney endorsed. (And if they repeal Obamacare, they’ll take away benefits for seniors.)
Andrew Sullivan reviews Romney’s new Medicare ad:
…$716 billion is how much Obamacare cuts from Medicare spending – but the ad implies this is some kind of cut to Medicare recipient’s benefits; it’s not. Pema Levy explains: Cuts made in the Affordable Care Act are to future growth and come from reimbursement reductions to hospitals, Medicaid prescription drugs and private insurance plans under Medicare Advantage. Ryan’s cuts come from shifting Medicare from its current form to subsidies for seniors to buy care themselves.
The Ryan plan also makes the same cuts, only by instituting a voucher program, all of which Romney is trying to murky-up by saying he’ll put that $716 billion “back”. The bottom line is they’re spinning another whopper here, just like in the welfare ads.
If the Romney campaign didn’t spin whoppers daily, they’d have nothing to deflect attention away from his business “experience” with Bain Capital and the 2002 Olympics, or why he won’t release his tax returns like every other presidential candidate. And Romney would also have to actually talk about how different his vision for America is from President Obama’s.