Donald Trump’s senior adviser Kellyanne Conway said on PBS Tuesday night that the President-elect was “considering” alternatives to the Medicare program put forth by House Speaker Paul Ryan, who has been pushing for privatization.
Conway was responding to a question from “PBS NewsHour” host Judy Woodruff, who asked about Trump’s view of Ryan’s proposal that Medicare be phased out in favor of a “premium support system”—his term for privatization.
“President-elect Trump has made very clear that he wants to make good on the promises that we as a nation have made to the seniors who rely upon Medicare, and certainly the lower income Americans who rely upon Medicaid and other entitlements like Social Security, frankly, for those who receive that,” Conway began.
Then, she reveals Trump’s true intention:
“He will, I’m sure, take a look at Speaker Ryan’s proposal and other proposals,” she continued. “In this case, he will go ahead and look at alternatives.” In other words, gutting Medicare and handing what’s left to Wall Street is on the table. They want to privatize the program, and if Republicans have their way Medicare will be dead within the next four years.
Today, over 55 million Americans currently rely on Medicare. The program is fiscally solvent through 2028 and a simple way to make it infinitely solvent would be to apply the payroll tax to all income over $100,000. But Republicans have hated Medicare since President Lyndon Johnson signed the program into law in 1965, and want to kill it now that they control both branches of Congress and the White House.
During the campaign, Trump had vowed that he was “not going to cut Medicare or Medicaid.” Now, his transition website states that he will “modernize” Medicare, which is code for giving it to Wall Street.
Needless to say, if you’re on Medicare or a worker who has paid into Medicare in hopes that it will be there for you when you need it, you’re out of luck. And if you voted for Donald Trump and the GOP, you’re a special kind of stupid who just got screwed.
Watch the interview below via “PBS Newshour.” The discussion of Medicare comes at around 5:23:
H/T: Talking Points Memo.