Citing Medicare, McKinley votes against GOP budgetW.Va. rep renews critique of Obama's tax-and-spend budget, ultra-partisan approach
WASHINGTON, D.C. -- Rep. David B. McKinley, P.E. (R-WV) voted against the 2012 budget passed by the House on Friday, saying that although he favors its overall deficit-reduction goals, he cannot support two of the main ways the savings in this budget are achieved: dramatically restructuring the Medicare program in a way that forces future retirees to pay substantially more for their healthcare, and keeping ObamaCare's crippling Medicare cuts in place.
McKinley also stated that he is unequivocally opposed to the president’s budget. In so doing, he reiterated his criticism of Obama’s plan and the speech he delivered this week calling for higher taxes.
“President Obama’s budget calls for $8.7 trillion in more deficit spending, $1.6 trillion in new tax increases and adds $13 trillion to the debt,” McKinley said. “We cannot continue this unsustainable status quo of record deficits and job-killing debt. Our small businesses and middle class deserve better. The president’s recent speech didn't change a thing. It just called for higher taxes on small businesses that would devastate the economy and was delivered in an ultra-partisan tone that demonstrates he's now fully engaged in a re-election campaign rather than participating in an adult conversation on how best to reduce the deficit.
“Congressman Paul Ryan’s proposal is a vast improvement over the president’s, and I thank him for putting forth a serious plan that puts us on a path toward balancing the budget and paying off our debt. Government spending is simply out of control. I am proud to have voted over 20 times to reduce spending in my first one hundred days in office, including the enactment of the largest spending decrease in America’s history this week. But we have far to go before the job is done.
“My home state of West Virginia has the highest percentage of Medicare beneficiaries in the country, and I cannot support a plan that the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) has determined would nearly double out-of-pocket healthcare costs for future retirees. Unfortunately, Medicare is on a path to bankruptcy unless action is taken. However, I am not convinced that such a dramatic overhaul of benefits for future retirees is necessary to save the program. Incremental changes may very well be a better solution when coupled with a robust effort to curtail fraud and abuse. The Government Accountability Office (GAO) recently found that in 2010 alone, Medicare lost $48 billion to fraud and other improper payments. We could save hundreds of billions of dollars over the next decade if we implemented stringent accountability measures to correct these massive mistakes.
“Further, one of the chief reasons I opposed ObamaCare was because it cut $500 billion from Medicare to pay for government-run healthcare, and this budget does not repeal President Obama’s cuts. The entire law should be repealed as we work toward real healthcare reform that brings down costs through a variety of free-market reforms.
“There are attractive elements of the Ryan budget: it continues the ban on earmarks, repeals the job-killing provisions of the ObamaCare law, and reduces over-regulation on American job-creators to grow the economy. But the senior citizens of ten years from now have already experienced severe financial losses in their retirement funds due to job-killing policies in Washington and abuses by Wall Street. They deserve a Medicare program that takes into account the economic turmoil of the last few years and guarantees retirement security.
“My votes to cut $100 billion in spending this year alone serve as a demonstration of my commitment to fiscal responsibility. But whether it’s the president’s budget, the budget passed today by the House or any other proposal that has been offered thus far, I do not believe the right solution for the 1st Congressional District of West Virginia has been found yet. I will continue to work with my colleagues both Republican and Democrat to develop the best way to balance the budget, protect Medicare and serve my constituents’ interests as we proceed with this debate in the months ahead.”
Capito Joins Bipartisan Group Of Lawmakers Urging The Administration To Stop Using The Clean Water Act To Justify Gross Overreach Of Federal Power4/19/11
Congresswoman Shelley Moore Capito, R-W.Va., joined a bipartisan group of 170 lawmakers in sending a letter to the Environmental Protection Agency and Army Corps of Engineers expressing deep concern that the “guidance” letter these agencies sent to the Office of Management and Budget for regulatory review is no more than an attempt to circumvent the rule-making process in order to change the scope and meaning of the Clean Water Act.
“Congress, not unelected bureaucrats, should be making the decisions on environmental policy. This “guidance” will significantly change the scope of the federal government’s power to regulate streams in West Virginia. Once again, this Administration is using broadly interpreted regulatory authority to overstep the bounds of its traditional role in the permitting process to advance a political agenda,” stated Capito.
To view the Transportation and Infrastructure Committee press release and the bipartisan letter click here.