Heck/Amodei Vote for BBA + Cuts to Medicare, S/S & Vets Benefits

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
November 18, 2011
Contact: Zach Hudson, Comm. Dir., NSDP
(702) 737-8683

Las Vegas, NV – Rep. Joe Heck and career politician and lobbyist Rep. Mark Amodei continued their assault on Nevada seniors and veterans today when they voted for legislation that would gut Medicare, Social Security, and veterans benefits.  Of course, this isn’t the first time Heck and Amodei have thrown Nevada seniors under the buss.  Heck has repeatedly called Social Security a “pyramid scheme” and voted earlier this year for a Republican budget that kills Medicare by turning it over to private insurance companies.  While not in Congress at the time, Amodei called the GOP budget plan “excellent,” and that he would “cozy up to” the architect of the plan and give him “whatever support he needs.”

The legislation Heck and Amodei voted for today would cut $1.2 trillion from Social Security, $750 billion from Medicare, and $85 billion in veterans benefits in the next decade.  What’s their excuse?  The budget deficit.  Funny how their desire to reduce spending evaporates when they vote to protect taxpayer giveaways to Big Oil and tax breaks for corporations that ship American jobs overseas.

“Whether it’s Joe Heck voting to kill Medicare and calling Social Security a ‘pyramid scheme’, or Mark Amodei saying turning Medicare over to private insurance companies is ‘excellent’, Nevada seniors shouldn’t be surprised that both politicians voted again to gut Medicare and Social Security today,” said Nevada State Democratic Party spokesperson Zach Hudson.  “Nevada has the highest unemployment rate in the country but Heck and Amodei continue to focus on pulling the rug out from under Nevada’s seniors instead of getting Nevadans back to work.”

Background:

GOP Balanced Budget Amendment Would Cut $1.2 Trillion From Social Security And About $750 Billion From Medicare Through 2021. In November 2011 the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities wrote, “The constitutional balanced budget amendment that the House is expected to consider this week could force Congress to cut all programs by an average of 17.3 percent by 2018.  If revenues are not raised (the House-passed budget resolution assumes no increase above current-policy levels) and all programs are cut by the same percentage, Social Security would be cut $184 billion in 2018 alone and almost $1.2 trillion through 2021; Medicare would be cut $117 billion in 2018 and about $750 billion through 2021; and Medicaid and the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) would be cut $80 billion in 2018 and about $500 billion through 2021.” [Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, 11/15/11]

GOP Balanced Budget Amendment Would Cut $85 Billion From Veterans’ Disability Payments, Compensation Through 2021.According to the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, the GOP’s proposed balanced budget amendment would  cut “veterans’ disability payments, compensation, and other entitlement benefits” by $85 billion through 2021 if revenues are not raised. [Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, 11/15/11]

Wall Street Journal: GOP Plan Would “End Medicare.” According to the Wall Street Journal, “The plan would essentially end Medicare, which now pays most of the health-care bills for 48 million elderly and disabled Americans, as a program that directly pays those bills.” [Wall Street Journal4/04/11]

Amodei Said He Would Support Ryan Plan. When asked whether he would support the Ryan budget on the Bill Manders Show Amodei said, “Well Robert, I’ll tell you, generally, yes I will.” [Bill Manders Show, KKOH Radio 780 AM, 5/9/11]

Amodei Claimed Ryan’s Plan for Medicare Was “Excellent.” Amodei praised the Ryan blueprint. “I like a lot of what he has to say in terms of Medicare. I think that’s excellent.” [Politico, 6/20/11]

Amodei Said He Liked Ryan’s Medicare Plan. The Las Vegas Sun reported on the Ryan plan Amodei said, “I like a lot of what he has to say in terms of Medicare.” [Las Vegas Sun, 7/14/11]

Amodei Said He Would Give Paul Ryan Whatever Support He Needs. On the Ryan budget, Amodei said, “I need to cozy up to Paul Ryan and give him whatever support he needs.” [Las Vegas Sun, 7/14/11]

Amodei Said He Would Go Stand with Paul Ryan. When asked how he would deal with the federal deficit, Amodei said: “I would go with and stand up with Rep. Paul Ryan and say how do we do this.” He said, “If you’re going to balance the budget, you have to where the money is and that means entitlements and that means defense.” [Nevada Appeal, 6/19/11]