Senate Democrats unveiled a 10-year spending plan on Wednesday that is at odds with President Obama’s offer to House Republicans to make significant cuts to Social Security and Medicare.
Senate Budget Committee Chairman Patty Murray, D-Wash., presented a budget blueprint that proposes only minor takeaways from Medicare and Medicaid and pledges to make those cuts “without harming beneficiaries,” reports The Washington Post.
An increasing number of Democrats are also opposed to a proposal that appears to be Obama’s biggest selling point to Republicans: his offer to apply a less-generous measure of inflation for Social Security, which would ultimately result in slightly smaller annual cost-of-living increases.
“I don’t want to break the bad news to you, but the president is not the only elected official in the United States,” said Sen. Bernard Sanders, I-Vt., a member of the Budget Committee, who strongly suggested Murray avoid any cuts to social programs in the spending plan.
“Some of us believe very strongly that it would be absolutely wrong to cut Social Security benefits.”
White House officials say Senate Majority Leader Harry M. Reid, D-Nev., and House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., are in favor of the president’s push for a grand bargain with the GOP and are willing to rally their rank and file to support politically touchy changes to health and retirement programs so long as Republicans sign off on significant new tax increases.
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