Raising Medicare age to 67 would save $5.7B, but …
Last night, Ezra Klein hosted the Rachel Maddow Show, and at the end he showed an analysis of the next-decade effects of raising the Medicare-eligibility age from 65 to 67. Earlier in the show, he had interviewed Rubinite, White House frontman, and Citigroup executive Peter Orszag who three times (IIRC) insisted that Obama will have to offer up that Medicare reform in order to get the GOP to give up their debt-limit leverage. Klein then showed Nancy Pelosi (at her best) demanding “Show me the money; show me how this would save any substantial amount … I don’t want give the GOP a ‘trophy concession’ and the expense of the people.” Or, words to that effect.
In a subsequent segment, Klein went into a detailed (for MSNBC) analysis of “the money,” and it boiled down to the fact that this so-called entitlement reform wouldn’t save a nickle; it would simply shift and double the costs. If fully implement by 2014, it would save Medicare $5.7B in that year but it would cost ACA, the states, other Medicare and exchange enrollees, employers, and the seniors themselves $11.4B, i.e., twice as much. So, I looked up that analysis on his blog this morning and he credits the Center for Budget and Policy Priorities for it. Summary: it shifts the costs and doubles them. (Both articles are worth a read.)
This attack is coming, and Obama is not our ally. So, it’s important that we arm ourselves with the facts.
UPDATE: The exact breakdown of those shifted expenses:
* $3.7B for 65 and 66-year olds
* $4.5B for employers
* $2.5B for other Medicare and exchange enrollees
* $0.7B for states