Letter to President Obama - Work with Congress, Find Bipartisan Solutions to Address Entitlement Crisis


By:  Orrin Hatch
Date: March 14, 2013
Location: Washington, DC

In Senate Republican Meeting With President, Utah Senator Shares Five Structural Reforms To Medicare & Medicaid Programs

Senate Finance Committee Ranking Member Orrin Hatch (R-Utah) today urged President Obama to work with Congress to find bipartisan solutions to reform the nation's entitlement programs to put the nation on a sound fiscal course. In a letter Hatch gave to the President today during a meeting with Senate Republicans, Hatch outlined five bipartisan structural reforms to the Medicare and Medicaid programs that he put forward earlier this year.

Below is the full text of the letter:

March 14, 2013

Dear Mr. President,

As we continue to debate our nation's fiscal future, it is imperative that we begin to work together to reform our unsustainable entitlement programs in order to preserve them for future generations and to bring our debts and deficits under control. I am writing to you in hopes that we can combine our efforts toward finding bipartisan solutions to these monumental challenges.

Over the next decade alone, we will spend more than $12 trillion on Medicare and Medicaid. That is more than the economies of France, Germany, Italy, Spain, and the United Kingdom combined. By 2035, if no changes are made to Medicare and Medicaid, they will consume almost 10 percent of the U.S. economy. It is no wonder that the Director of the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office has referred to health care entitlement spending as our country's "fundamental fiscal challenge."

Entitlement reform is not a Republican or Democratic issue -- it's an American challenge that needs your immediate leadership. Any real and sustainable solution to these problems will take the combined efforts of both Republicans and Democrats. Toward that end, I have enclosed an outline of five structural reforms to Medicare and Medicaid. Each of these proposals has bipartisan origins, including ideas from the Bowles-Simpson Commission and reforms proposed by President Clinton. I believe they represent a good starting point for a serious, bipartisan conversation to address our country's urgent fiscal challenges.

Throughout our nation's history, even in times as difficult as these, leaders have come together to address our most pressing challenges. We have an opportunity to do so again. Having served with you, I know you and I can work together to make sure that our future generations have the same opportunities to succeed that you and I have been blessed with in this great nation. I look forward to working with you to address these important issues.


Orrin G. Hatch
United States Senator

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