FACT CHECK: Mourdock’s Friends Push “Lie of the Year”

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Indianapolis, Ind.--Today, Joe Donnelly’s campaign responded to Richard Mourdock’s friends airing yet another misleading ad, which perpetuates the “lie of the year” and other scare tactics regarding health care.

“Only in Richard Mourdock’s ‘my way or the highway’ campaign does it make sense to lie about health care coverage, especially since he would allow companies to drop cancer coverage for their employees to save money,” said Paul Tencher, campaign manager.  “Mr. Mourdock would decimate health care for our seniors and even thinks Medicare is unconstitutional. He can’t offer his own TEA Party ideas because Hoosiers have rejected them, so his friends lie about Joe’s record.  That’s just more of the Washington Way: more gridlock, more fighting, less getting things done.”

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Truth

V/O: Congressman Joe Donnelly.  Middle of the road?  Take health care.  Instead of common sense solutions to cover the uninsured, pre-existing conditions, and young adults, The Affordable Care Act does all of those things, and Republicans including Richard Mourdock have yet to offer an alternative that accomplishes the same goals. [Politico, 7/11/12]
Donnelly joined the far left to pass a law that went much further, Health care reform is saving Medicare patients $1.5 billion on prescription medication. Over 2.65 million Medicare beneficiaries saved over $1.5 billion on their prescription drugs.  These savings are from the 50% discount that beneficiaries in the "donut hole" received under health care reform.  [USA Today, 12/6/11]

Over 24 million Medicare beneficiaries received a free health care screening. Over 24 million people with Medicare obtained a free Annual Wellness Visit  or other preventative care without paying any additional costs.  Preventative services available for free for Medicare beneficiaries include Annual Wellness Visit, mammograms, cholesterol screenings, and prostate cancer screenings.  [USA Today, 12/6/11]

Health care reform is fully funded and reduces our deficit. In 2011, the Congressional Budget Office estimates the ACA will reduce the federal deficit by $210 billion in Medicare savings and tax revenue sources by 2021. [Congressional Budget Office, 3/30/11]
imposing one of the largest tax hikes in history, The ACA provides American families and small businesses with $828 billion in tax credits. This breaks down to $806 billion in tax credits for American families to help them afford health care.  This also includes $22 billion in tax credits for small businesses to help them provide health care for their employees. [Senate Finance, 7/29/12; CBO, 3/2012]

Health care reform reduces our deficit. In 2011, the Congressional Budget Office estimates the ACA will reduce the federal deficit by $210 billion in Medicare savings and tax revenue sources by 2021. [Congressional Budget Office, 3/30/11]

Joe Donnelly supports major change to the health care reform bill, while
still making sure health insurance companies cannot deny coverage and prescription drug companies can't price gouge consumers. Donnelly is independent of President Obama, routinely voting against Obama-Democratic budgets because of overspending. He supports a line item veto, opposes increases in the gas tax, and wants to take tax breaks away from companies that ship jobs overseas. [Kokomo Tribune, 3/13/10; Fort Wayne News Sentinel, 6/2/12]
cutting $700 billion from Medicare, Health care reform does not cut Medicare.  This claim has repeatedly been found to be false. The Washington Post called it “misleading,” and found that the health care bill “actually puts Medicare on a more solid financial footing.” Other independent fact checkers agree and stressed that “time and again” they've pointed out exactly how misleading this claim is.  [Washington Post, 6/14/11; FactCheck.org, 9/17/10, 8/20/10, 3/19/10, 6/13/12]

Seniors will have more money in their pockets because Medicare Advantage premiums will fall in 2012. The Department of Health and Human Services recently announced that "On average, Medicare Advantage premiums will go down next year and seniors will enjoy more free benefits."  [HHS, 9/15/11]

Economists characterized calls to repeal the savings “puzzling and bogus” and said it would raise out-of-pocket costs for seniors. Reported the New York Times, “While Republicans have raised legitimate questions about the long-term feasibility of the reimbursement cuts, analysts say, to restore them in the short term would immediately add hundreds of dollars a year to out-of-pocket Medicare expenses for beneficiaries....For those reasons, Henry J. Aaron, an economist and a longtime health policy analyst at the Brookings Institution and the Institute of Medicine, called Mr. Romney’s vow to repeal the savings “both puzzling and bogus at the same time.”  Marilyn Moon, vice president and director of the health program at the American Institutes for Research, calculated that restoring the $716 billion in Medicare savings would increase premiums and co-payments for beneficiaries by $342 a year on average over the next decade; in 2022, the average increase would be $577.” [New York Times, 8/21/12]

Mourdock Challenged The Constitutionality Of Social Security, Medicare, And Medicaid. Reported the Evansville Courier & Press, “‘I challenge you in Article I, Section 8 of the United States Constitution where those so-called enumerated powers are listed. I challenge you to find words that talk about Medicare or Medicaid or, yes, even Social Security,’ he [Mourdock] said then.  He does not specifically refer to the programs as unconstitutional, and does not call for their repeal. He does, though, say: ‘Nowhere is the word entitlement present in the enumerated powers.’”  The newspaper continues, “‘It [A MaorityPAC Ad] also says Mourdock claimed "a plan that essentially ends Medicare’ — a reference to the proposal by Republican Mitt Romney's running mate, U.S. Rep. Paul Ryan, to instead hand seniors a voucher to purchase private insurance — does not go far enough.  He has praised Ryan's plan, but said in a meeting with Purdue University's College Republicans chapter that he doesn't think it ‘goes far enough, fast enough to start to roll back the scope of government.’” [Evansville Courier & Press, 8/23/12]

Mourdock supports the Ryan Budget, which would have repealed all the benefits of health care reform, but adopted all but "$10 billion of the nearly $500 [now $716B] billion in Medicare savings." "It’s rather rich for Republicans to complain about $500 billion in supposed cuts to Medicare that they themselves would retain."  Mourdock’s plan would also raise health care costs for seniors by over $6,000.  [Washington Post, 6/14/11; CBPP,4/15/11; Senate Vote 77, 5/25/11; House Vote 277, 4/15/11]
and putting Washington bureaucrats in charge of your health care decisions. Independent fact checkers have said this is the "Lie of the Year." The government is not taking over medicine, taking over hospitals or controlling doctors. Americans can stay on their employer-provided health care.  They can keep their doctors.  The ACA does not have any government-run insurance plan.  [PolitiFact, 12/16/10]
Joe Donnelly.  His words don’t match his record. Joe Donnelly has a long record of fighting to improve the health care bill, voting to repeal the 1099 requirement and co-sponsoring the repeal of the health care bill’s tax on medical device manufacturers. The Protect Medical Innovation Act passed the House 270-146, in June 2012, with 233 Republicans and 37 Democrats supporting the repeal. [thomas.loc.gov, accessed 7/18/12]

 

 

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