March 14,2013

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Julia Lawless, Antonia Ferrier, 202.224.4515

Senate Democrats’ Budget Fails to Deliver on Entitlement Reform

Net $56 Billion Medicare, Medicaid Spending Reductions in Murray Budget Equals 0.2 Percent Reduction in All Entitlement Spending Over Next Decade

WASHINGTON – While America’s three entitlement programs – Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security – are set to cost $24 trillion and reach just over 12 percent of the size of America’s economy over the next ten years, Senate Democrats’ budget includes only a net $56 billion in Medicare and Medicaid savings – while doing nothing to Social Security.

With Medicare set to go bankrupt within the next ten years, that $56 billion translates to a 0.2 percent reduction – amounting to about five days of federal spending - on these three programs that are the primary drivers of America’s near $17 trillion debt.  Social Security is untouched, even though the Disability Insurance Trust Fund will go bust in 2016, and disabled American workers will face benefit cuts of more than 20 percent.

“This budget is a sham,” said Finance Committee Ranking Member Orrin Hatch (R-Utah).  “It never balances, grows the government and does nothing to confront the leading drivers of our debt: our entitlement programs.  Real profiles in courage – next to nothing to reform Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security, coupled with up to $1.5 trillion in tax hikes from the American people, if Democrats have their way. This budget isn’t fair or balanced – it’s an extreme liberal wish list that would hurt job creation, economic growth and opportunities for middle-class families.”  

Below is a snap shot of the health of America’s entitlement programs and health care spending:

  • Over the next 10 years, growth in Medicare spending is estimated to increase by 70 percent, according to MedPAC’s March 2013 Report to Congress.
  • According to Senate Democrats’ Budget, Medicare will account for $504 billion, and Medicaid accounted for $309 billion in 2013.
  • Medicare will spend $42 billion a month, or $1.38 billion a day.
  • Medicaid will spend $25.7 billion a month, or $840 million a day.