This guy wants Senator McCaskill’s seat, yeah, that’s good for Missouri

Sent: May 19, 2011 03:54 PM
Subject: From the office of Congressman Todd Akin



Dear Daniel:

Thank you for contacting me regarding H.Con. Res. 34, the House Budget Committee’s FY2012 budget resolution. It was good to hear from you.

As you may know, this budget squarely faces the need to reform Medicare and Medicaid in order to keep these programs – which so many rely on – available for the long term.

With regard to Medicare, HCR 34 makes no changes to benefits for today’s seniors, age 55 and older. At the same time, this budget reforms Medicare for the next generation. The fact is that Medicare will be bankrupt in nine years. Medicare recipients are already being denied access to the care they want because of the financial stress this program is under. In fact, faced with low reimbursement rates, more doctors are limiting the Medicare patients they accept, if they accept new patients at all. Inaction on Medicare has immediate, negative consequences for seniors. For those under the age of 55, this budget phases the out the current Medicare benefit system, and offers a personalized plan that gives tomorrow’s seniors the same choices members of Congress have. This is a premium-support system, where Medicare pays private insurers for a plan option selected by seniors. It is also income-adjusted so those who need more help get more Medicare premium support. Over time, this plan will drive down costs and improve care by making insurance companies compete against each other for seniors business.

With regard to Medicaid, this budget ends the one-size-fits-all approach to program requirements and enrollment criteria that has tied the hands of state governments. By sending more money directly to the states, based on inflation and population needs, this budget will allow each individual state to offer their Medicaid populations better access to care. The current federal Medicaid bureaucracy produces massive inefficiencies, including a 10% improper payment rate – more than three times the amount of waste that other federal agencies generate.

HCR 34 makes no changes to Social Security. It does not raise the retirement age and it does not reduce benefits or adjust benefits based on personal income / net worth.

HCR 34 also delivers common sense tax reform that will help many seniors. It makes the tax code simpler flatter and fairer. These reforms will reduce the burden on working families and small businesses, which will spur innovation and job creation and make U.S. businesses more globally competitive. We must stop exporting jobs to China and India because of our high tax rates. Lowering the rates on small businesses – while eliminating certain tax loopholes  will give our job creators the advantages they need to lead us out of our current economic malaise.

Current spending rates are digging a hole we will never get out of and passing on a future of debt and despair to our children. In Washington, politicians are used to playing a game of “kick the can down the road.” But our country simply can’t afford that game anymore. We need a clean break from the politics of the past if we are going to make government more effective and efficient. I believe that this budget makes the hard choices. It does what we are supposed to do, not what’s easy to do. And that means a future full of opportunity for all Americans.

HCR 34 passed with my support on April 15, 2011. I am confident that these reforms are the most viable way to reform Medicare while protecting our nation’s seniors and to preserve Medicaid while providing states with opportunities to explore the best ways to assist low income individuals with their health care needs.

Again, thank you for taking the time to contact my office. It is a privilege to represent you and I hope that you will not hesitate to contact me regarding any matter where I might be of assistance. Please visit my website, where you can find more information on current issues, share further thoughts with me via email and subscribe to my e-newsletter for updates on issues you care about. For more facts about the 2012 budget plan, you may also visit this House Budget Committee webpage.


Todd Akin
Member of Congress

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