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Trump and The DC Republicans Will Cut Social Security and Medicare If They Win in 2020

The radical right and the oligarchs have always opposed Social Security and Medicare because those programs have proven that government can be a force for good for the American people. Thanks to Social Security and Medicare, poverty among the elderly has been reduced from 50% to 9%. Unfortunately, the DC Republicans’ long standing opposition to these programs is little known to the average voter. Let’s take a little trip down memory lane regarding the DC Republicans’ vociferous opposition to these successful, anti-poverty programs.

Just one year after the passage of Social Security, during the heat of the 1936 Presidential campaign, GOP Presidential nominee Alf Landon said that: ”If the present compulsory insurance plan remains in force, our old people are only too apt to find the cupboard bare.” George W. Bush predicted in 1978 that Social Security would go broke in 1988 unless Congress privatized the system. Closer to home and more recently, Senator Ben Sasse claimed that: ”entitlement reform must be addressed now before those programs, if not restructured, collapse of their own weight.”

The radical right’s opposition to Medicare is equally disingenuous and hyperbolic. Conservative icon Ronald Reagan was retained by the American Medical Association to campaign against Medicare when it was introduced by President John F. Kennedy. In a 1961 LP that he recorded, Reagan contended that so-called socialized medicine would curtail Americans’ “freedom” and that “pretty soon your son won’t decide when he’s in school, where he will go or what he will do for a living. He will wait for the government to tell him.” In his peroration Reagan concluded: “One of these days you and I are going to spend our sunset years telling our children, and our children’s children, what it once was like in America when men were free.”

Right wing opposition to Social Security and Medicare has never ceased. Reagan as president made two unsuccessful attempts to cut Social Security and George W. Bush made a big push to privatize and turn Social Security over to Wall Street in 2005. Over the last ten years, the Republicans in Congress have repeatedly introduced legislation aimed at cutting Medicare and turning it into a voucher program. Under these GOP proposals, senior citizens would pay an additional $6,000.00 in out of pocket medical expenses and Medicare would be turned over to the private health insurance industry.

Despite all of these failures, the DC Republicans still haven’t given up on their dream to reverse the progressive reforms of the 20th century. According to a recent Vanity Fair article, Trump has said that gutting Medicare would be a “fun second term project.” Moreover, DC Republicans have said that cutting Social Security would be part of Trump’s “second term project.” Both Senators John Barrasso and John Thune have signaled their support for this so-called “fun project.” Moreover, there is no doubt that Mitch McConnell would be on board.

If the Republicans win in 2020, cuts to middle class programs would be a high priority. The process would be similar to what we saw when the Republicans tried to kick 23 million Americans off health insurance in 2017. The bill would be drafted in complete secrecy by a handful of party bosses, there would be no hearings, and only limited debate would be allowed. The votes would probably be held in the middle of the night when fewer people are paying attention. It would be very swift and sudden.

You can be sure that Nebraska’s rubber stamp Congressional delegation would follow the lead of Trump and their party bosses. Fischer, Sasse, Forteberry and Smith have all voted several times to end Medicare as we know it and turn it into a voucher plan. Don Bacon supports cuts to Social Security and votes with Trump 96% of the time.

The stakes couldn’t be any higher in 2020. All of us must vote Blue no matter who. Any decision to stay home or vote third party is essentially a vote for Trump and the Republicans in Congress. The country can’t afford a Trump second term. It’s on to victory in 2020! Let’s do it! No excuses! Get it done!

I’m a trial lawyer, a Democratic activist and a sports fan.

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