Please Tell Dems What Magic Words on Medicare Are

Washington Post “Factchecker” Glenn Kessler (9/6/12) doesn’t like the way Democrats talk about Republican Medicare plans:

Glenn Kessler at the New America Foundation.

Glenn Kessler

The claim that Republicans will “end the Medicare guarantee” has been a frequent refrain at the convention, perhaps in response to factchecker complaints about the incorrect charge last year that Republicans would “end Medicare.” But this phrase is a bit odd since there is no actual “guarantee” for any program that can be changed by some future Congress.

The striking feature of Ryan’s original Medicare plan was that when it’s fully phased in, most seniors would not be able to afford healthcare.  Ryan’s updated plan is slightly different, but it retains the essential problem: The costs of healthcare would rise faster than the support seniors get to pay for healthcare, thereby making healthcare increasingly unaffordable.

Kessler should tell Democrats what the right way to talk about this is, because it’s an important thing for voters to know.

About Jim Naureckas

Extra! Magazine Editor Since 1990, Jim Naureckas has been the editor of Extra!, FAIR's monthly journal of media criticism. He is the co-author of The Way Things Aren't: Rush Limbaugh's Reign of Error, and co-editor of The FAIR Reader: An Extra! Review of Press and Politics in the '90s. He is also the co-manager of FAIR's website. He has worked as an investigative reporter for the newspaper In These Times, where he covered the Iran-Contra scandal, and was managing editor of the Washington Report on the Hemisphere, a newsletter on Latin America. Jim was born in Libertyville, Illinois, in 1964, and graduated from Stanford University in 1985 with a bachelor's degree in political science. Since 1997 he has been married to Janine Jackson, FAIR's program director. You can follow Jim on Twitter at @JNaureckas.