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STATEMENT: CAP Action’s Tanden on Ryan-Wyden Plan to Increase the Privatization of Medicare

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Contact: Katie Peters
Phone: 202.741.6285

Washington, D.C. — Today, Neera Tanden, Counselor to the Center for American Progress Action Fund, released the following statement regarding Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI) and Sen. Ron Wyden’s (D-OR) plan to privatize Medicare:

The Medicare privatization plan unveiled today by Rep. Ryan and Sen. Wyden still shifts costs to many seniors, making many of those who wish to remain in traditional Medicare pay sharply higher premiums—or forcing them to move to a private plan that provides lower quality care or less choice of providers. While the plan provides seniors a “choice” of traditional Medicare, in reality it’s a false choice for many that jeopardizes their economic security. Private plans could cherry-pick healthy beneficiaries to undercut traditional Medicare, driving up premiums for those who remain in traditional Medicare. This result would sacrifice the advantages of Medicare: its pricing power, its low administrative costs, and its ability to drive system-wide efficiencies in health care delivery. These risks are too great and set our country and our seniors on an uncharted path that lays the foundation to end Medicare as we know it.

This new plan is nothing more than a smokescreen to cover up the efforts of conservatives earlier this year to end Medicare as we know it. Nothing has changed. Conservatives voted to dismantle Medicare. Conservatives still want to place more of a burden on America’s seniors.

For more information on the impact of the Ryan-Wyden plan to privatize Medicare, see Igor Volsky’s ThinkProgress column entitled "Paul Ryan Convinces Ron Wyden to Support Greater Privatization of Medicare."

To speak with a CAP Action expert on this topic, please contact Katie Peters at or 202.741.6285.


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