The floor of the House saw quite a bit of Congressman Paul Ryan today as lawmakers debated budget proposals affecting 2012. Ryan, the House Budget Committee Chairman, defended his plan which includes reforms to Medicare. It would entail seniors in the future choosing from a list of private insurance providers with subsidized coverage. He claims it would be similar to the insurance received by federal employees, including those in Congress.
The Janesville Republican also bashed President Obama’s plan to create a panel of 15 experts that could force Medicare policies on Congress. Ryan called it a “rationing board” with no Congressional oversight.
Ranking Budget Committee Member Chris Van Hollen said Republicans simply want to go back to the past. “I would remind my colleagues that the reason Medicare was created in the first place was because the private insurance industry wouldn’t cover seniors at affordable care.” The Maryland lawmaker spearheaded an alternative $3.68 trillion budget from Democratic leadership.
The House passed the $3.5 trillion, GOP-backed budget plan 235-to-193 for fiscal year 2012. On Thursday, the chamber passed a budget for fiscal year 2011.