counterpoint
A Small Step In The Right Direction
By H.E. Frech III and Kenneth L. Danger

Wrong Fix, Wrong Time
By Joe White

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As part of their proposal to balance the federal budget by 2002, senators passed Medicare premium hikes on upper-income seniors. Congressional and White House negotiators are now deciding whether the proposal will be part of the final budget package.


A Small Step In The Right Direction

By H.E. Frech III and Kenneth L. Danger

The Senate's proposal to charge higher premiums for Part B (physician's services) insurance for higher income Medicare beneficiaries is a small step in the right direction. It recognizes reality: Medicare is a welfare program, part of the governmental safety net. The details of Medicare are not part of the social contract. Medicare can be changed and still provide high quality coverage and access, but at a lower cost. This is the social contract.

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Wrong Fix, Wrong Time

By Joe White

If being a centrist means endorsing dangerous policies that anger liberals, President Clinton is getting more centrist every day. His support for the Senate's "means-test" of Medicare premiums is nowhere near so bad as his signing of last year's welfare bill. But it puts Medicare at greater risk than is necessary to "save" it.

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This edition of Counterpoint was posted July 24, 1997. The opinions expressed here are solely those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the view of AllPolitics.


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