On July 9, House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Paul Ryan (R-WI), in his opening statement in the House Ways and Means Committee, said, “Subcommittee Chairman Sam Johnson has been working on solutions all year.”
The candidates in a battleground congressional district in Illinois disagreed about the impact for Social Security and Medicare of a Republican-passed plan crafted by House Budget Committee chairman Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) during an Oct. 21 radio debate sponsored by AARP.
Congress doesn't get much done on the budget without a deadline hanging over it, and this time it's staring at a deadline - or at least a first deadline - of Dec. 13.
One fiscal crisis is winding down, but another round of budget negotiations looms. And that could mean Social Security and Medicare cuts will again be part of the conversation.
Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton is leading in matchups against Republicans. New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie is the top GOP presidential contender. Clinton gets a big nod over Christie (48 percent to 36 percent).
It was once accepted conventional wisdom in politics that messing with federal retirement programs would sink a candidate with older voters. Want to win retiree-rich Florida? Then just attack your opponent as a threat to Social Security or Medicare or both. During the 1992 Democratic presidential primary, Bill Clinton took one little paragraph from Paul Tsongas' treatise, "A Call to Economic Arms,'' in which his rival floated the idea of a 1 percent reduction in cost-of-living adjustments for Social Security. Using the passage to portray Tsongas as an enemy of the retired, Clinton succeeded in winning Florida and permanently damaged Tsongas' campaign.
"Let's talk about Medicare and entitlements. Both Medicare and Social Security are going broke and taking a larger share of the budget in the process. Will benefits for Americans under these programs have to change for the programs to survive? " - Martha Raddatz, vice presidential debate, Oct. 11, 2012
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