Wed May 25, 2011

Colorado Senators Oppose Medicare Changes

Colorado’s Democratic senators firmly oppose a budget plan coming up for a vote this week that would overhaul Medicare.

Senate Democrats hope to force Republicans to cast a risky vote on a House budget that would eliminate Medicare and give older Americans vouchers to pay for health insurance instead. Senator Mark Udall (D-CO) says Americans don’t want those changes.

“It does two things the American people don’t want. Number one, it puts an insurance company between you and your doctor. I thought we were moving beyond that approach. And then secondly, it really takes money out of Medicare that we’re going to need to deliver medical services,” says Udall.

Republicans say changes to Medicare are needed because the program is going broke. But like Udall, Senator Michael Bennet (D-CO) is also voting “no” on those changes. “Because I don’t think it reflects what my constituents would like,” Bennet said.

Democrats know there’s political risk in doing nothing, too. They hope to compromise with the GOP on a deficit-cutting budget.

Capitol News Connection contributed to this report.