The looming deal

I was on Capital Tonight hosted by NewsChannel14’s Tim Boyum’s on December 13, talking about what a deal on entitlements between Democrats and Republicans might look like. We covered several topics, which can be found at the following time stamps (click the image, or the url above to go to the vid).

  • Why do Republicans want to cut entitlement spending more than do Democrats? (10:30-13:00)
  • The likelihood that means testing high income beneficiaries, either through higher premiums or reduced benefits is likely in Medicare and Social Security (13:00-14:30)
  • Why raising the Medicare age is a bad idea (but maybe inevitable politically) (14:30-16:30)
  • High taxes v. means testing as a way to preferred means to reach a deal (16:30-17:30)

What will a deal look like?

Today there is word that the pace of fiscal cliff negotiations are hastening. If those reports are correct, that means a pretty big deal (in addition to increased tax revenue, Social Security benefit cuts, more infrastructure/stimulus, top line reductions in Medicare and/or Medicaid) is in the works, using the deadline of the fiscal cliff as the ‘hold hands and jump together impetus’ necessary to get such large swaths of policy done quickly, but with lots of policy details (a tax reform; decisions about how to reduce Medicare and/or Medicaid spending) left up to Congress to be hashed out in the new Congress. This seems about the best outcome that could be hoped for, and it would be great if the new Congress could return to normal order in addressing legislative priorities.

About Don Taylor
Professor of Public Policy (with appointments in Business, Nursing, Community and Family Medicine, and the Duke Clinical Research Institute), and Chair of the Academic Council at Duke University . I am one of the founding faculty of the Margolis Center for Health Policy. My research focuses on improving care for persons who are dying, and I am co-PI of a CMMI award in Community Based Palliative Care. I teach both undergrads and grad students at Duke. On twitter @donaldhtaylorjr

2 Responses to The looming deal

  1. Pingback: Keith Hennessey on debt limit and health reform « freeforall

  2. Pingback: Keith Hennessey on debt limit and health reform « The Reality-Based Community

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