Thursday, September 15, 2011

Republican won in NY by running from, not embracing, Ryan Medicare plan

Much is being made of the Republican victory in a special House election in New York, including the claim that Paul Ryan's Medicare plan is no longer poison for Republicans.  

Politico declared Ryan one of the winners in Tuesday's election:

“Three months ago, Democrats successfully seized on the House Budget Committee chairman’s controversial plan to rewrite Medicare in an upstate New York special election. But that message didn’t work this time for Weprin, who hammered Turner over the plan and who raced into senior centers during the final days of the race to brand the Republican as scary. Icing on the cake for Ryan: The approach didn’t work for Democrats in Nevada either, where Republican Mark Amodei won by a landslide in Tuesday’s other special election.”
That's not quite the whole story, according to Fred Bauer on a Republican blog, Frum Forum:

[The Republican winner] Bob Turner distanced himself from the Ryan budget on Medicare and from Rick Perry (or at least the Perry of Fed Up!) on Social Security. The “Issues” page on his website reads (emphasis added):

Social Security and Medicare represent solemn commitments made by the government to people who have been paying into this system their entire lives. I believe that these programs should be preserved as they are for those in or near retirement and that we should work to strengthen and preserve them for our children and future generations. I oppose efforts to privatize or bankrupt either. I would work with members of both parties to reach a solution that will meet our obligations on both of these programs.
Mediscare couldn’t work against Turner because he pledged his total support for Medicare. Indeed, he has spoken strongly against the Ryan budget. This election is less a sign of victory for the Ryan budget and more a sign that Republicans can run away from this budget (at least if they haven’t voted for it) and win.

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