March 01, 2017

Hirono, Casey, Donnelly Call on President to Commit to Protecting Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid

Senators Mazie K. Hirono, Bob Casey (D-Penn.), Joe Donnelly (D-Ind.), and 13 Senate Democrats urged the President to keep a campaign promise to protect Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid from drastic cuts and privatization.

The Senators’ letter called on the President to issue a public statement saying that he would not sign legislation that makes significant changes to Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid through the reconciliation process, and to issue official guidance making clear the President’s support for these programs.

The Senators wrote:

“Your appointment for Secretary of Health and Human Services, Tom Price, has authored proposals that would undermine the hard-earned, guaranteed benefits of Medicare by privatizing the system and ending Medicare as we know it. Price has also supported plans to make significant cuts to Medicaid, which would weaken the vital support it provides. As the Washington Post reported after his confirmation hearing before the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions Committee, Trump has pledged not to cut Medicaid or Medicare, but Price did not do the same.’

“Simply put, the stakes of rushed, ill-conceived, or ideologically-focused changes to Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid on the lives and security of American families are too high to be left ambiguous, particularly as you and our Senate colleagues seek to pursue legislation related to health care.”

Senators Tammy Baldwin (D-Wis.), Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.), Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio), Tammy Duckworth (D-Ill.), Al Franken (D-Minn.), Ed Markey (D-Mass.), Bob Menendez (D-N.J.), Patty Murray (D-Wash.), Jack Reed (D-R.I.), Tom Udall (D-N.M.), Christopher Van Hollen (D-Md.), Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), and Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.) also signed the letter to the President.

In January, Senators Hirono and Donnelly led an amendment to protect Medicare and Medicaid from drastic cuts through the budget reconciliation process.

Click here to download a copy of the letter.