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Blunt Calls for Action on President's Medicare Legislation

WASHINGTON, Feb. 25 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- House Republican Whip Roy Blunt (Mo.) issued the following statement today regarding President Bush's legislation that will be introduced by Republican Leader John Boehner (Ohio) and Democratic Leader Steny Hoyer (Md.) in an effort to put Medicare on a path to economic stability:

"This legislation makes commonsense, sorely needed reforms to put Medicare on a path to long-term economic stability. Without attention by 2017, Medicare will spend more money than it takes in putting at risk the health needs of today's and tomorrow's seniors.

"Republicans in Congress are committed to addressing the hard problems confronting our nation - after all, that is why the American people elected us to office. For far too long, the only so-called solutions offered for dealing with Medicare's economic woes have been to simply ignore the problem. The proposed reforms introduced today mark a break from that sad trend and offer viable solutions that get to the heart of the problem.

"I hope that Democrats grasp the urgency of this issue and work with Republicans to save Medicare for future generations and put the interest of both our seniors and the future well-being of our nation first."

NOTE: Below is a summary of President Bush's Medicare proposal:

-- Reform the nation's medical liability laws in order to put patients' interests before those of trial lawyers;

-- Focus the Medicare prescription drug program on low-income seniors by limiting the amount of taxpayer funded benefits for seniors with incomes of more that $80,000, saving Medicare an estimated $3 billion over five years; and

-- Allow the Department of Health and Human Services to introduce value-driven competition into Medicare and create incentives for high-quality, low-cost health care options.

SOURCE House Republican Whip Roy Blunt
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