This week marks the 47th anniversary of Medicare, a historically successful program that has provided health care to seniors, raised the American life expectancy from 70 years old to 78 years old, and helped lower poverty rates for seniors from 30 percent to 9 percent.

Today, more than 1,669,386 seniors in Michigan rely on Medicare for health care.

Despite the absolutely crucial role that Medicare plays in the lives of Michigan seniors, both Clark Durant and Pete Hoekstra have repeatedly supported plans that would:

  • end Medicare as we know it,
  • let private insurance companies make health care decisions for seniors, and
  • raise the costs of health care for seniors by thousands of dollars.

Below you will find specifics of Clark Durant and Pete Hoekstra’s destructive plans for Medicare.

Clark Durant Supports Sen. Mike Lee’s Extreme Tea Party Budget

In 2012, Durant said he supported the Tea Party budget presented by Sen. Mike Lee because he didn’t think Congressman Paul Ryan’s budget goes far enough. [Republican Women’s Club Debate, 5/14/12]

  • The Lee-Durant Budget Would End Medicare As We Know It By 2017
Lee’s budget would replace Medicare’s guarantee of health coverage and force Michigan seniors to go back to buying their own health care on the private market. Seniors would only be provided a voucher with which to find and buy coverage from big insurance companies; the voucher would have less and less purchasing power over time. [Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, 5/16/12]
  • The Lee-Durant Budget Increases Eligibility Age For Medicare
Lee’s budget would raise the Medicare eligibility age from 65 to 68 over the next ten years. Social Security’s early retirement age would rise from 62 to 65, and the full retirement age would rise to 68. [Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, 5/16/12]

Pete Hoekstra Supports Paul Ryan’s Budget Proposal To End Medicare

In 2012, Hoekstra said he would have voted for Paul Ryan’s budget had he been in Congress.

“If I’d had the opportunity to vote for or against it in the House of Representatives, I obviously would’ve voted for it.” [ITPP Candidate Forum, 5/8/12]

In 2012, Hoekstra said he supported Rep. Ryan’s budget proposal that would partially privatize Medicare.

“I would embrace the plan that Paul Ryan has put forward on Medicare where you are going to allow for partial privatization and seniors can go into the marketplace with subsidies and buy it based on need.” [ITPP Candidate Forum, 5/8/12]
  • The Ryan-Hoekstra Budget Would End Medicare As We Know It, Forcing Seniors to PAY MORE for Health Coverage
According to the Washington Post, Ryan’s budget would “end Medicare” as we know it… “new retirees could choose a private policy on a newly established Medicare exchange.” According to the Congressional Budget Office, “most beneficiaries who receive premium support payments would pay more for their health care than if they participated in traditional Medicare.” [Washington Post, 4/5/11, emphasis added]
  • The Ryan-Hoekstra Budget Would Force Seniors To Pay $6,400 More For Medicare Coverage
According to the Congressional Budget Office, under the Republican proposal, seniors would have to pay $6,400 more per year for their health coverage.


“But seniors would have to pay about $6,400 more than if the program were not changed, according to the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office.” [St. Petersburg Times, 4/22/11]
  • The Ryan-Hoekstra Budget Would Convert Medicare Into A Voucher System
Hoekstra’s plan for Medicare would do away with Medicare’s direct payment for health care for seniors, replacing it with a voucher system in which seniors are forced to get coverage through private insurance companies. [Los Angeles Times, 4/15/11]
  • The Ryan-Hoekstra Budget Would Force 1,510,033 Michigan Seniors Onto Vouchers When They Retire
There are more than 1,510,033 near-elderly Michigan residents who are now ages 47-56 who, instead of getting Medicare as we know it when they retire, would only get a voucher to purchase their insurance. [CBPP 3/20/12, Census, accessed on 3/20/12; CBPP 12/21/11; KFF, accessed on 3/21/12; NCPSSM, 3/20/12; Democratic Policy and Communications Center; 3/22/12]
  • The Ryan-Hoekstra Budget Will Force 123,822 Michigan Seniors Back Into the Prescription Drug “Donut Hole”

The Republican budget would “re-open” the prescription drug donut hole and cost the average senior who falls into the donut hole approximately $11,794 between 2012 and 2020. The “donut hole” forces seniors to pay the full cost of their prescription drugs after their yearly drug expenses exceed $2,840, and full coverage doesn’t resume until total drug spending hits $6,447 for the year. Since health reform was signed into law, closing the donut hole, 123,822 Michigan seniors saved $73,803,484.30 on prescription drugs. [HHS, 3/19/12; State level data compiled by HHS, 3/20/12]


Source: Press Release – Michigan Democratic Party

Submit Press Releases, News, Calendar Items, and Community Events to Great Lakes Radio Stations WFXD, WKQS, WRUP, WQXO, and WPIQ
Click To Submit Press Releases, News, Calendar Items, and Community Events to Great Lakes Radio Stations WFXD, WKQS, WRUP, WQXO, and WPIQ