What good is a fact checker if it won’t stand up to the biggest of all Republican lies? In a move that can only be described as Orwellian, PolitiFact says anyone who correctly points out that the House-approved GOP budget plan ends Medicare gets their Lie of the Year:
Republicans muscled a budget through the House of Representatives in April that they said would take an important step toward reducing the federal deficit. Introduced by U.S. Rep. Paul Ryan of Wisconsin, the plan kept Medicare intact for people 55 or older, but dramatically changed the program for everyone else by privatizing it and providing government subsidies.
Democrats pounced. Just four days after the party-line vote, the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee released a Web ad that said seniors will have to pay $12,500 more for health care “because Republicans voted to end Medicare.” […]
[Democrats] ignored the fact that the Ryan plan would not affect people currently in Medicare — or even the people 55 to 65 who would join the program in the next 10 years. They used harsh terms such as “end” and “kill” when the program would still exist, although in a privatized system.
As Greg Sargent tweeted, “According to @Politifact, if I convert my garage to a shed, and you say it’s no longer a garage, you are the liar of the year.” Matt Yglesias provides a more in-depth breakdown of PolitiFact’s twisted logic.
The even bigger lie is that Medicare needs replacing in the first place. It’s a lie the GOP needs to convince young people to look the other way while the GOP works to gut entitlement programs to fund tax cuts for the ultra-wealthy. In reality, Social Security is completely fine through at least 2038 and Medicare is primarily facing a health care cost pressure problem. Shifting that cost burden from the government to the individual doesn’t address that problem at all. All the House GOP budget does is give the biggest tax cuts in history to the wealthy, funded by a combination of slashing the social safety net and massive borrowing.