President Barack Obama’s campaign is airing a new ad that claims Republicans are threatening the future of Medicare.
The ad, running in North Carolina and other battleground states, quotes the AARP as saying a plan offered by prospective GOP vice presidential candidate Paul Ryan “would undermine … Medicare and could lead to higher costs for seniors.”
In a news release, the campaign said Republican Mitt Romney “continues to mislead the American people about President Obama’s record on Medicare – and skip the truth about his own plan to eliminate the guarantee of Medicare and provide people with a voucher to buy health care instead.”
Romney spokesman Robert Reid dismissed the ad, called “Facts.”
“President Obama’s new ad ‘Facts’ gets the facts wrong,” he said. “The facts concerning the president’s record on Medicare are clear, 1) Obama cut the program by $716 billion; 2) Millions will be forced to lose their Medicare Advantage coverage and 3) The program will go bankrupt in 2024.
“Mitt Romney has a plan for Medicare that protects it for today’s seniors and strengthens it for future generations.”
The nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office has estimated that Medicare spending would be reduced by more than $700 billion under Obama’s plan. According to the Kaiser Family Foundation, those reductions would phase in over 10 years and affect mostly hospitals, health insurers, home health and other providers – not beneficiaries.
Kaiser says the Ryan plan calls for the same reductions.
Ryan’s plan also would change benefits for those now under 55. The government would provide a set amount of money with which people could use for a private health plan or a government-run system.
The CBO estimates benefits would likely shrink and the number of uninsured rise because the plan repeals Obama’s health care law.