18 Nov Debt Panel Urged To Consider Effects of Cuts to Entitlement Programs
On Thursday, federal lawmakers and Medicare and Medicaid beneficiaries gathered on Capitol Hill to warn the debt panel of the consequences of cutting entitlement programs as part of deficit-reduction strategies, Modern Healthcare reports (Zigmond, Modern Healthcare, 11/17).
Republicans seek significant entitlement cuts to curb increasing deficits, and some Democrats on the panel have indicated that they are willing to increase Medicare premiums (Hughes, Wall Street Journal, 11/17).
Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), who led the event, was joined by Sens. Ben Cardin (D-Md.), Barbara Mikulski (D-Md.) and Rep. Rose DeLauro (D-Conn.)
Sanders said, “[T]he deficit was caused by two wars — unpaid for; it was caused by huge tax breaks for the wealthiest people in this country; it was caused by a recession that was the result of the greed, recklessness and illegal behavior on Wall Street.” He added, “And if those are the causes of the deficit and the national debt, I will be damned if we’re going to balance the budget on the backs of the elderly, the sick, the children and the poor” (Modern Healthcare, 11/17).