On Medicare: Stabenow stands up for seniors; Hoekstra stands with special interests
There is a very clear and important difference between Senator Stabenow and Pete Hoekstra on the issue of Medicare.
Senator Stabenow has always fought to protect Medicare because seniors have earned it over a lifetime of hard work. On the other hand, Pete Hoekstra would turn Medicare into a voucher program and make seniors pay $6,400 more every year for their health care all -- with all the benefit going to insurance companies.
Get the facts about each candidate’s positions below.
Hoekstra’s plan: turn Medicare into a voucher program, make seniors pay more
Hoekstra supports a plan that would turn Medicare into a voucher program. Instead of guaranteed benefits, retirees would get a coupon to use to buy insurance from private companies. Nonpartisan studies show this plan would force seniors to pay an average of $6,400 more for their health care every year. That's great for the insurance industry, but bad for seniors. That’s why AARP opposes Hoekstra’s plan. [ITPP Candidate Forum, 5/08/12; New York Times, 8/11/12; New York Times, 8/11/12; Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, 4/07/11; AARP Letter, 3/21/12]
The vouchers Hoekstra wants to give to seniors would not even keep pace with rising health care costs! That means the vouchers would cover a smaller and smaller share of seniors’ costs and Medicare recipients would be forced to pay more and more as the years go by.
Hoekstra's plan would make seniors pay more and use that money for more tax breaks for millionaires and special interests.
Hoekstra's plan would give millionaires an average tax break of $250,000 each year, and give oil companies $40 billion in taxpayer subsidies in the coming years. [Washington Post, 6/19/12; Center For American Progress, 3/20/12]
Senator Stabenow has led the fight to protect Medicare
Senator Stabenow knows that seniors have earned their Medicare benefits over a lifetime of hard work. That is why she has consistently fought to protect Medicare's guaranteed coverage for seniors. Earlier this year, the National Committee to Preserve Social Security and Medicare recognized her leadership when they presented Debbie with a pair of boxing gloves so she could continue her fight on behalf of America's seniors. [WOOD TV, 4/5/12]
Senator Stabenow supported strengthening Medicare by stopping overpayments to insurance companies, which has already helped lower premiums and extended the solvency of Medicare by eight years. She is leading the effort to let Medicare negotiate with drug companies for lower prices for seniors. These changes could save as much as $200 billion. [Washington Post, 9/6/12; NCPSSM, accessed 10/8/12]