Tom Price: Congress will tackle Medicare privatization next year

There are the rumors swirling around Trump Tower. And then there are the ground-shifting plans being hatched in Congress. The Hill newspaper in D.C.:logo-all

The head of the House Budget Committee said Thursday that lawmakers are eying an overhaul of Medicare next year.

Budget Committee Chairman Tom Price (R-Ga.) said he expects lawmakers to push forward with an overhaul “within the first six to eight months” of President-elect Donald Trump’s administration…

It’s the first time that a House GOP leader has said officials are planning to fast-track an overhaul of Medicare in 2017.

Privatization of the federal program for senior health care is a top priority of House Speaker Paul Ryan, but it’s a dicey topic – given that old people are more likely to vote. Especially in off-year elections.

Price, a congressman from Roswell, is also being talked about as a potential secretary of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services in a Trump administration. He’ll be on GPB’s “Political Rewind” at 3 p.m. today with one of your Insiders and host Bill Nigut. We’ll be pressing him for more details.

***

We’re told that it wasn’t House Republican leaders who pressured state Rep. Jason Spencer, R-Woodbine, to withdraw House Bill 3, a measure aimed at women in Muslim garb.

Rather, advocates of “religious liberty” legislation persuaded Spencer to drop the issue, with the observation that “We need this special legislation to protect our citizens from people like us” isn’t necessarily a winning argument.

***

On that same topic, the Georgia chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations on Thursday thanked state Rep. Jason Spencer for withdrawing H.B. 3. From the press release:

“We thank Rep. Spencer for withdrawing House Bill 3,” said Edward Ahmed Mitchell, executive director of CAIR-GA. “Although the controversy over this legislation has come to a swift and welcome end, we hope to eventually meet with Rep. Spencer in an effort to dialogue, build bridges, and personally thank him for doing the right thing.”

***

Home Depot co-founder Bernie Marcus, a Republican mega-donor and one of the most influential Jewish GOP voices in the nation, is defending Donald Trump’s pick of a strategist Steve Bannon as his top White House advisor. Bannon is executive chairman of Breitbart News, which has served as a platform for many with anti-Semitic, white nationalist and racist views.

In a statement passed around on Twitter, Marcus called Bannon “a passionate Zionist” and cast the attacks on him as an attempt to undermine the president-elect’s administration.

“What is being done to Steve Bannon is a shonda,” he said. That’s Yiddish for “shame.” The entire statement, posted on Breitbart News, of course:

I have known Steve Bannon for many years. I have been shocked and saddened to see the recent personal attacks on Steve. Nothing could be further from the truth. The person that is being demonized in the media is not the person I know. These attacks on Steve are nothing more than an attempt to undermine the incoming Trump Administration. I have known Steve to be a passionate Zionist and supporter of Israel who felt so strongly about this that he opened a Breitbart office in Israel to ensure that the true pro-Israel story would get out. What is being done to Steve Bannon is a shonda.

Marcus also recently spoke at an Atlanta Jewish Breakfast Club roundtable. From the Atlanta Jewish Times:

Trump was not his first or even 10th pick for the Republican nomination, Marcus told the more than 70 attendees, but once the party selected the New York businessman, Marcus embraced him as preferable to Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton.

 

“Donald Trump is a breath of fresh air,” Marcus said, and he poses a threat to government employees standing in the way of economic growth. “Every bureaucrat in Washington is a monster.”

 

Marcus, the father of AJT owner and publisher Michael Morris, has no interest in a formal role in the Trump administration but said he will make himself available whenever the new president wants his advice.

***

Former Georgia lawmaker Newt Gingrich had already told us as much, but he made it official this week: he will not be in Donald Trump’s Cabinet. He told McClatchy he won’t accept a Cabinet post and that his aim is to be “focused on strategic planning.”

We reported last week that he wants to be a “senior planner” in the Trump administration.

Reader Comments 0

78 comments
Dolores Jones
Dolores Jones

This is disgusting. He gets great benefits and we pay for them. We get what we paid for and they want to take our benefits away. Major protests. We cannot let this happen.

Joey Henry
Joey Henry

Agreed! I don't understand why so many people, Seniors especially, voted for these tools across the board after they've been saying they will do this for the past 8 years

Dolores Jones
Dolores Jones

Joey Henry for sure I did not would not and could not. Where do they find these people?

Joey Henry
Joey Henry

Dolores Jones no clue. The rich and powerful buy them during the elections and the candidates lie and manipulate their base all while catering to the people that bought them.

Eliana Jofre de Alvarez-Donis
Eliana Jofre de Alvarez-Donis

Privatization will make it so expensive, people will have to choose between eating or seen a doctor. It will be the real #deathpannels

Gabriele Bernhard
Gabriele Bernhard

Medicare is not an entitlement - we pay for it with our SSI Taxes and Medicare Taxes. When will you all understand that. Medicaid and Food Stamps (Welfare), Free Phones, Housing Vouchers etc. is an entitlement - most of these People never paid a dime into the System while they are receiving the Money from those that paid all their lives as well as those that are currently paying and those that died and never received any benefits. That Money was suppose to be in TRUST waiting for us to retire but the Government gives it way to all those that are too lazy to get a JOB and those that are here Illegally. I don't know if you have a Job or how old you are but if you are working you are paying - so you should be upset regardless of the Political Party because this has been going on for a long time now and when you are ready to receive your SSI and Medicare - there will be nothing left.

Jeannie Casey
Jeannie Casey

There are people who are on SSI disability instead of regular disability. They are covered under medicaid instead of medicare, but who cares about them, right? Lets just cut them off. Smh

Gabriele Bernhard
Gabriele Bernhard

Jeannie Casey No Dear these are people that most likely paid into the system - they should never be under that status. Obama lumped all that stuff together under Welfare - SSI and SSI Disability and Medicare should be separate and disabled SSI people should be under Medicare.

Jeannie Casey
Jeannie Casey

Sorry, Gabriele Bernhard, misunderstood you. You are right, ALL disabled should be under Medicare. I like your profile pic.

Gabriele Bernhard
Gabriele Bernhard

Jeannie Casey No reason to be sorry - our Politicians should be the ones that should be sorry. We the People pay all of our working lives and they just spend and spend like money grows on trees. Have a wonderful Thanksgiving Dear.

Jan Huff
Jan Huff

Just make sure that Congress has to use Medicare instead of their private government insurance when they get old

Becky Brown
Becky Brown

It could become better. Why is everything so negative?

Joey Henry
Joey Henry

Good job voting for republicans and Trump this election \U0001f602hope you enjoyed your Medicare and all the money you put into Social Security going down the toilet.

Jackie Madaris
Jackie Madaris

With Republican in total control is now the time to get it done

Mike Dougherty
Mike Dougherty

Will Jay Bookman go to the VA Hospital for treatment?

Georgia Blue
Georgia Blue

Some people count. Most people don't. Nobody knows this better than the Dapper Doc.

Melissa C Williams
Melissa C Williams

Interesting that they seem intent on attacking their own base! The mid terms should be very interesting. If they think they have protesters now, wait till the old pros from the 60's hit the streets!

Terry Bozeman
Terry Bozeman

Sad but you get what you voted for and this is the beginning of one hell of 4 years.

Margaret Mishra
Margaret Mishra

He is the most despicable person in the state of georgia

Ronald C Shelby
Ronald C Shelby

Do we get a private account with all the money we've contributed to it over the years, and still haven't been eligible for yet?

Babs Roberts
Babs Roberts

Paul Ryan is a 64 Pinocchio Nose! Trump will USE him, NEVER TRUST him... a chameleon just out for his own profit... he should resign but he won't. He will, however, have to WORK, PRODUCE and SHOW POSITIVE results or he will get a memo saying.. " you're fired!"...

Sam Nicholas
Sam Nicholas

Need Medicare? Need entitlements? Vote Red? Deserve what you get.

Sam Nicholas
Sam Nicholas

Medicare IS an entitlement. It is supplemented by taxpayers as noone makes the possible million it may take for soneone to live until they are 90. Sad but true.

Gabriele Bernhard
Gabriele Bernhard

Medicare is not an entitlement - we pay for it with our SSI Taxes and Medicare Taxes. When will you all understand that. Medicaid and Food Stamps (Welfare), Free Phones, Housing Vouchers etc. is an entitlement - most of these People never paid a dime into the System while they are receiving the Money from those that paid all their lives as well as those that are currently paying and those that died and never received any benefits. That Money was suppose to be in TRUST waiting for us to retire but the Government gives it way to all those that are too lazy to get a JOB and those that are here Illegally. I don't know if you have a Job or how old you are but if you are working you are paying - so you should be upset regardless of the Political Party because this has been going on for a long time now and when you are ready to receive your SSI and Medicare - there will be nothing left.

Brooke McArthur
Brooke McArthur

Food stamps. The majority of food stamp households has at least one worker, has children, disable, or, most commonly, goes to the elderly. People who are able to work by and far use it as intended, a period of months after a job loss or health crisis. Except for the children, people who receive foodstamp benefits have paid in the program the same as you. Due to being targeted relentless by Republicans it is the program with the lowest fraud, less than 1¢ for every dollar spent. So it's an entitlement program just as much as Medicare is. I can pull sources for every statement made, can you?

Sam Nicholas
Sam Nicholas

Add food stamps, GI Bill, Pell...and yes...I always can provide sources. Republicans want to cut ALL of it.

Dorie Leland
Dorie Leland

Jeremy smith NC is already privatization medicade, they will privatize all of these programs. Some private company owned by Paul ryans neighbors brothers uncles half sister will get the contract.

Leon Gibbs
Leon Gibbs

I'm not sure how i feel about this, but it's probably a bad idea even though the government can't get it right. People that that still pay in might get an increase out of their checks?

Cecelia Landress
Cecelia Landress

No... I do not know where you got the idea that this is going to be beneficial. Wrong move

Constance Rutledge
Constance Rutledge

Republican politicians have to do what their corporate bosses want. Look at their bills & votes and see if you can find a single one in the past, say 8-10 years that's favored citizens over corporations.

Michelle Beasley
Michelle Beasley

When the Republicans F**K UP Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security, all those who voted for DUMP will march in the streets!!! Republicans have OPENED PANDORA's BOX and it will be too late. Revolt NOW while you still have a chance!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Gabriele Bernhard
Gabriele Bernhard

Medicare is not the problem that's what we pay Taxes for - Medicaid and Welfare are the Problem as well as the Politicians Salaries and Benefits - cut them off specially the Illegals and Refugees.

Sam Nicholas
Sam Nicholas

"No...um..cuz dem facts duz matter"---Historical NHE, 2014: NHE grew 5.3% to $3.0 trillion in 2014, or $9,523 per person, and accounted for 17.5% of Gross Domestic Product (GDP). Medicare spending grew 5.5% to $618.7 billion in 2014, or 20 percent of total NHE. Medicaid spending grew 11.0% to $495.8 billion in 2014, or 16 percent of total NHE.Aug 10, 2016

Sam Nicholas
Sam Nicholas

In case it's hard: Medicare is $618.7 Billion and Medicaid is $495.8B.

Jeannie Casey
Jeannie Casey

There are people who are on SSI disability instead of regular disability. They are covered under medicaid instead of medicare, but who cares about them, right? Lets just cut them off. Smh

Sam Nicholas
Sam Nicholas

$35 BILLION to countries that include Israel.

Steve DeWeil
Steve DeWeil

How about not giving the benifits that I worked my whole life to accrue to some illegal who jumped the fence last week.

Spencer Maynard
Spencer Maynard

So you think they don't have to have ID to sign up for government benefits? Okay.

Steve DeWeil
Steve DeWeil

Folks are welcome to benifits they earned. But, not my benifits that I worked my entire life for.

Glenda Joiner
Glenda Joiner

What is the benefit to us, the taxpayers and how will it be controlled so it does not become unafordable but, at the same time, having coverage that is needed?

Becky Fly
Becky Fly

If it goes the same way as the privatization of some of our prisons, We'll get less services, poorer quality and pay more for it. Meanwhile a handful of people will get very, very rich and will lobby Congress for more ways to take advantage of the sick.

Melissa C Williams
Melissa C Williams

And doesn't disappear when the market tanks like it did in 2007/2008!

Marilyn Mitchell Davidson
Marilyn Mitchell Davidson

Exactly! Medicare is wonderful! The entire country should be on it. It should never be changed. They want you to have vouchers! Just say NO. Altogether, they cannot do this to us!!