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Statement From John Kerry on Howard Dean Putting Medicare on the Table for Budget Cuts

Location: Unknown

October  20,  2003

"Yesterday's Des Moines Register said Howard Dean 'favors balancing the federal budget in part by limiting growth of entitlement programs.'  Dean said 'We're going to have to limit the growth of entitlement programs.'

"Howard Dean wants to fix George Bush's failed economic policy and massive deficits on the backs of seniors who have worked hard to make this country what it is today.   

"The Republicans wanted a $270 billion cut in Medicare in 1995 to balance the budget.  The Republicans, led by Newt Gingrich also then denied they intended to 'cut' Medicare, saying then that they only wanted to 'limit the growth' of the program.  Unfortunately, Howard Dean supported their proposal to raise premiums for tens of millions of seniors who depend on the Medicare program for their health security. 

"Bill Clinton and Democrats in Congress had the courage to stand up to Newt Gingrich and his supporters and fight for Medicare in 1995 and we won.  That proposal to cut Medicare was wrong then and Howard Dean's latest idea to cut Medicare now is wrong too.

"We can cut the deficit in half in four years, give Americans access to the health care coverage they need, invests in education and homeland security without doing it on the backs of our elderly."

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