People like to ask me questions about politics, and on Monday, an elderly woman was upset enough to ask me if she was going to lose her Medicare coverage.
By the time we finished talking, I was pretty shocked at what she told me.
This woman worked all her life and is a person I admire. She is a person of modest means.
I told her she wasn’t going to lose her Medicare because there is no Republican or Democrat in the land crazy enough to try to shut it down.
Now this individual whom I am not naming because we were talking as friends was extremely irate about the back and forth on Medicare.
She votes Democrat, by the way. She doesn’t hold my Republican-Libertarian views against me. She has said more than once that the president she voted for in 2008 has disappointed her.
As we talked, I had a second one way conversation going on in my head—I figured I would have to run defense over Rep. Paul Ryan’s ideas for saving Medicare.
My friend told me she’d seen a lot of talk about Medicare on TV.
I told her not to get upset—it’s standard for politicians to attack each other in an election year. I told her Ryan is one of the only people in Washington who’s actually offered specifics about the plan, but the president’s healthcare bill did have changes to Medicare.
“So don’t be too upset with the Republicans,” I said.
“I’m not upset with Republicans,” she told me. “I’m upset with Obama. He cut Medicare with his health bill.”
Now this woman isn’t a 24/7 news junkie. She doesn’t have a dish, and whatever package she has for her TV service doesn’t offer Fox News. She doesn’t own a computer, so there’s no opportunity for her to read news on the Web.
I was pretty shocked that a non-political type actually learned the truth about who pushed Democrats to pass a bill that legally and officially cuts Medicare more than $700 billion and doesn’t return the money to the program.
Pretty shocked indeed.
And naturally, I’m sort of pleased she’s mad at her Democrats. I wonder how many other elderly Dems know their president actually signed a bill that legislated cuts to Medicare.
(Commentary by Kay B. Day/Aug. 14, 2012)