"A couple weeks ago," says Hochul, "there was a law passed on Capitol Hill that turned back the clock to the 1960s. What it did was, it said no longer will our Medicare program be the way it is now. It ends Medicare as we know it. That's not me talkin'. That's the Wall Street Journal and all the major news sources."
That was the message that new congresswoman told crowd after crowd, from town hall meeting to cafes to standing on the sidewalks shaking hands with anyone and everyone. She was talking about Rep. Paul Ryan's "Path to Prosperity" bill that has passed the republican-led congress. A bill that basically will put an end to medicare as we know it. He calls it a "Voucher System". It seems most of the country thinks it stinks to high heaven!
Two months ago, no one had even heard of this woman except her hometown and district. Now she is national news and giving the republicans fits. The conservatives have swallowed the poison pill that is the "Ryan Bill" and now they are grabbing their throats. Next week it gets worse when Sen. Harry Reid will call for an up and down vote on the bill in the senate. The republicans are shell-shocked. Vote for it and you own it. Vote against it, and the conservatives and Teabaggers will be up in arms.
"I have almost always voted the party line," said Gloria Bolender, a Republican from Clarence who is caring for her 80-year-old mother. "This is the second time in my life I've voted against my party."
Pat Gillick, a Republican from East Amherst, who also cast a ballot for Ms. Hochul, said, "The privatization of Medicare scares me."
This is what the republicans are up against across this country. Everyone, including die-hard conservatives, want to cut the deficit. But they also know that when they retire or get sick and have to stop working, they will need a heath care plan and Medicare is the only game in town. They also don't want to have to take in Grandma or Aunt Betty when they are thrown out of a nursing home paid for by Medicare. I guess Ryan and company have found out how fickle people can be when it comes to themselves and their bank accounts.
"Health insurance these days is very costly, and it's not something that most people can afford to go out and buy on their own," said Tim Messner, 38, a technology quality assurance analyst from Barberton, Ohio. "I don't know that we could possibly plan ahead for medical insurance, but if you had to replace Social Security or investments, you at least have an idea of what you can live on."
That is exactly what the republicans are up against. Medicare and Social Security is a vital element of most people's retirement plan, no matter how much they have saved. People know, that one devastating illness, one bad fall and your whole bank account and everything you own can be gone in a heartbeat. The republicans, in all their vigor to go along with the Teaparty and rich conservatives that won't be effected by these changes, have now got themselves into a pickle that they can't get out of.
"What it does," she continues, "is instead of having guaranteed health insurance, like we've all come to rely on the last 45 years, it says you'll have a voucher, instead. Now, they're saying: Don't worry, seniors! It's not going to affect you. It's only the people my age, 55 and up. But they actually did something that made your prescription drugs cost more. Current seniors would actually pay more for prescription drugs, and future seniors--and I hope to be a senior someday myself--will have a voucher program. I've gotta tell ya, I'm the candidate in this race who's gonna look out for your interests."
The next year is going to be a game changer. Newt Gingrich has been going on news shows predicting that the republicans will pick-up so many seats in the house and senate in the next elections that they will have the biggest majority in history. Newt Gingrich has, as usual, has put his Golden Tiffany foot in his less than truthful month, once again. Rep. Ryan's plan is the best thing to happen to the democrats since "Big Bubba" himself, Bill Clinton. Let's all just sit back and see how the republicans can lie their way out of this mess. It sure looks great on them!
"The election is a choice: Vote for the Democrat and save Medicare, or vote for the Republican and start dismantling it for spare parts".