WASHINGTON — In his press conference on Monday morning, President Barack Obama repeatedly insisted that he was willing to tackle some sacred cows as part of a larger package to raise the debt ceiling. Just how sacred, however, may surprise political observers.
According to five separate sources with knowledge of negotiations — including both Republicans and Democrats — the president offered an increase in the eligibility age for Medicare, from 65 to 67, in exchange for Republican movement on increasing tax revenues.
The Democrats better stand up against this betrayal of the American people. The idea that cuts to Medicare need to be offered in exchange for eliminating tax loopholes for the wealthy is insane. It’s also bad for our economy.
What will happen if the age of Medicare eligibility is raised? People will stay in the workforce for two more years, which will create more unemployment. There will be more competition for jobs, which will put a downward pressure on wages.
The age of eligibility for Medicare should be lowered, not raised. Lowering the eligibility age will allow people to retire earlier, since they won’t have to worry about insurance, and that would take people out of the workforce, which would lower unemployment.
Cuts to Medicare and Social Security should not be considered under any circumstances. It would be bad for America.