Morgen on October 6, 2009 at 7:28 am
One year ago we were in the final stages of an election campaign the outcome of which would shape history. As we all know, Barack Obama ultimately beat John McCain by a wide margin, sweeping into office on a platform of hope and change, and declaring a new era of transparency and responsible government.
Flash forward to the present, where the President has staked the bulk of his political capital, and perhaps the fate of his entire presidency, on an effort to transform our health care system. In the midst of the worst economic downturn in at least 30 years, and facing trillion dollar budget deficits, the President knew from the outset that in order to sell this initiative to moderate members of Congress and the public at large he would have to devise a way to pay for it without burdening the middle class with new taxes. And so cleverly he and his advisors have proposed that two-thirds of the cost of reform – $600+ billion over 10 years – will be paid for by reducing spending in Medicare and Medicaid.
Flashback to one year ago, and watch in amazement as the Obama campaign rips John McCain for proposing to partially fund his health reform plan through…get this…cuts in Medicare:
Barack Obama: I’m Barack Obama and I approve this message.
Narrator: How would your golden years turn out under John McCain? His health care plan would cut Medicare by $800 billion. That means a 22% cut in benefits. Higher premiums and co-pays. More expensive prescription drugs. Nursing home care could suffer and so could your choice of doctor. After a lifetime of work, seniors’ health care shouldn’t be a gamble. John McCain’s plan, it’s not the change we need.
At the time, these claims represented a gross exaggeration of the facts as McCain had not provided detailed numbers on funding for his health care plan. Only that this total would include significant “savings” in Medicare by reducing fraud and reforming the Medicare payment system. Not unlike statements that Senator Obama was making about his plan for Medicare at the time. But when all that mattered was being elected, Obama had no problem equating Medicare savings with benefit cuts.
Of course now that President Obama has proposed specific changes to Medicare, he has forcefully and repeatedly claimed that anyone who says his plan will reduce benefits for seniors is fear mongering and spreading myths. When at a minimum his proposed cuts to Medicare will mean the elimination of benefits under the Medicare Advantage program.
He was lying about McCain’s plan…and he is lying now.
Exit question: How is that a media outlet like Politico can post this video prior to the election, brushing off the misleading nature of the ad, and editorializing that it was a “secret plan to run up the deficit” by McCain…without calling attention to Obama’s hypocrisy now? An oversight I’m sure.
Update: In case you missed it, I put together a video a couple of months ago calling out all the Democrats for their hypocrisy on Obama’s proposed Medicare cuts. Watch: