A supermajority of the Senate Democratic caucus, led by Sen. Jay Rockefeller (D-West Virginia), wrote President Obama today urging him to not make the Medicaid, the low-income state-run health insurance program, a “sacrificial lamb” in the upcoming budget fight.
Democrats love defending Medicare, especially in light of the obvious boost it gave to Rep. Kathy Hochul, who stunned the political class when she won a special election last month in a conservative upstate New York congressional district. Her attacks on House Republicans’ proposal to slash Medicare funding in the next budget (and her opponent’s support for those cuts) was the centerpiece of her campaign. After all, nearly all voters will ultimately grow old — if they are not over 65 already — and be eligible to receive Medicare.
We don’t tend to hear them talk nearly as much about Medicaid, because a program that is seen as helping minorities and the poor is harder to politically defend in the face of complaints by white, middle-class swing voters. [Politico]
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Copyright 2011 The National Memo