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Truth and ObamaCare

Seniors were recently sent a brochure from the federal Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) entitled “Medicare and the New Health Care Law -- What it Means for You” (CMS Product No. 11467 available in English and Spanish). Also on the front was the message: A Message from Kathleen Sebelius, Secretary of Health & Human Services.

As the editorial in the Washington Examiner’s weekend edition explained:

“How does the brochure misrepresent the facts about Obamacare? First, the brochure claims that under the new law, "the guaranteed Medicare benefits you currently receive will remain the same." But the CMS' own experts said in a report earlier this year that the new law's cuts in Medicare spending may push as many as 15 percent of hospitals and other institutional providers into the red, "possibly jeopardizing access" to needed care for millions of seniors. There is no way that current Medicare benefits will remain the same if one of every seven medical providers is no longer profitable.

“Second, the brochure claims Obamacare includes "improvements to Medicare Advantage," but says nothing about the fact that the new law includes at least $130 billion in spending cuts for that program. Only in Obamaworld does a $130 billion spending cut in a program for millions of seniors qualify as an "improvement."

Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-Kentucky) took off after the CMS brochure in a floor speech last week, including:

“Another method was the stifling of critics, as was done by the Department of Health and Human Services.

“I’ve spoken out repeatedly on the gag order HHS issued against private companies for doing nothing more than informing seniors about provisions of the bill that could affect their benefits.

“Well, now you can add another layer of outrage to that unfortunate chapter in this debate because just yesterday, I came across a recent flyer from the Department Health and Human Services that does the very thing the administration didn’t want private companies to do.

“The flyer purports to inform seniors about what the health care bill would mean for them.

“Much of it directly contradicts what the administration’s own experts have said about the law.

“And all this is bought and paid for by the American taxpayer.

“So this is a complete outrage, and it’s precisely the kind of thing Americans are so angry about at the moment.

“Here’s the federal government telling a private business it can’t communicate with its clients about important legislation, then doing the same thing itself, on the taxpayers’ dime.

“The administration’s own actuary at the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services says seniors who use Medicare Advantage will lose benefits as a result of this bill. Yet the flyer they’re putting out says nothing about this. Instead, it implies nothing will change for these seniors.

“But perhaps most egregious is the claim that a bill which cuts Medicare by half a trillion dollars will actually ‘preserve and strengthen’ Medicare.

“This is nothing short of government propaganda, paid for by the taxpayer.

Finally, the American Thinker's Rick Moran opines, "The administration can't seem to get around to telling the people the truth about what Obamacare means to them."

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