Wanna cut MediCare? Just leave ObamaCare in place.
We know what the Democrats' playbook will be running up to 2012: MediScare. They'll run a play where they MediScare to the left, then they'll MediScare to the right, and they'll try running the MediScare right up the middle. The benefit of such a one-dimensional strategy is that as a political message, it will sink in unless the GOP comes up with a counter argument. A pair of writers deliver that counter argument in the Wall Street Journal:
[S]uppose the law is implemented just as it's written. In that case, according to the Medicare Trustees, Medicare's long-term unfunded liability fell by $53 trillion on the day ObamaCare was signed.
But at what cost to the elderly? Consider people reaching the age of 65 this year. Under the new law, the average amount spent on these enrollees over the remainder of their lives will fall by about $36,000 at today's prices. That sum of money is equivalent to about three years of benefits. For 55-year-olds, the spending decrease is about $62,000—or the equivalent of six years of benefits. For 45-year-olds, the loss is more than $105,000, or nine years of benefits.
Do nothing, leave ObamaCare in place, Medicare takes a massive hit. The Ryan plan, which has become the basis of the Democrats' MediScare campaign, was actually built to save Medicare and get the country back on a path toward solvency. The path we're on is a path to unsustainable spending and ultimately bankruptcy. The Republicans are going to have to hammer away to counter the Democrats' MediScare tactics, or defeat in 2012 is a real possibility.
Fortunately for the GOP, ObamaCare is already a loser for the Democrats. Making them defend that awful bill is already part of the GOP's 2012 game plan.