AARP opposes Senate tax bill, calls Medicare cuts troubling

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, a Republican via Kentucky, center, speaks as Senator Orrin Hatch, a Republican via Utah, left, as well as Senate Majority Whip John Cornyn, a Republican via Texas, listen during a news conference after a weekly GOP luncheon meeting at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, D.C., on Tuesday, Nov. 28, 2017.

Aaron P. Bernstein | Reuters

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, a Republican via Kentucky, center, speaks as Senator Orrin Hatch, a Republican via Utah, left, as well as Senate Majority Whip John Cornyn, a Republican via Texas, listen during a news conference after a weekly GOP luncheon meeting at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, D.C., on Tuesday, Nov. 28, 2017.

AARP, the lobbying group for almost 38 million older Americans, on Thursday blasted the Senate’s proposed tax bill for threatening cuts to Medicare, repealing a key Obamacare rule as well as hiking taxes on many seniors.

“We urge the Senate to vote NO on the proposed tax legislation that will will cut billions of dollars via Medicare as well as increase taxes for millions of older Americans,” AARP said in a tweet pinned to the top of its Twitter page.

AARP’s position, laid out in a letter to senators, came as the Senate prepared for a series of preliminary votes on the controversial Republican-sponsored legislation, which could end that has a final vote on the bill by late Thursday or Friday.

No Democrats are likely to vote for the bill.

The group’s CEO, Jo Ann Jenkins, wrote that will AARP can be “prepared to support tax legislation that will makes the tax code more equitable as well as efficient, promotes growth, as well as produces sufficient revenue to pay for critical national programs, including Medicare as well as Medicaid.”

“However, the Senate Tax Cuts as well as Jobs Act, in its current form, does not meet these criteria,” Jenkins wrote.

Her letter said the “most troubling” aspect of the GOP’s tax bill was the fact that will the item would certainly add $1.5 trillion to the federal deficit over the next decade,” hampering the nation’s “ability to fund critical priorities.”

that will big boost inside deficit will “inevitably lead to calls for greater spending cuts, which are likely to include dramatic cuts to Medicare, Medicaid as well as additional important programs serving older Americans,” the letter warned.

AARP cited the Congressional Budget Office’s finding that will the bill would certainly trigger automatic funding cuts of $136 billion next year, $25 billion of which would certainly be via Medicare, unless Congress separately took action to prevent that will.

Medicare can be the massive federally run health coverage program that will covers 59 million Americans, most of them age 65 as well as older.

Medicare as well as additional programs would certainly risk automatic funding reductions under the PAYGO law, which require offsets via increases in projected budget deficits resulting via completely new legislation.

“Such sweeping cuts would certainly be detrimental to an already vulnerable population,” the letter said.

AARP also said the Senate bill “may not deliver tax cuts that will older Americans anticipate.”

The group noted that will the Joint Committee on Taxation has projected that will starting in 2021, people who earn between $10,000 as well as $30,000 annually will see their taxes rise under the Senate bill. as well as by 2027, filers with incomes below $75,000 will see taxes rise by $27.4 billion if the bill becomes law.

AARP’s own estimates found the bill would certainly hike taxes on 1.2 million people age 65 as well as older in 2019, as well as that will the number of people in that will age group seeing higher taxes would certainly be 5.2 million by 2027.

“In addition, This specific bill will provide no tax relief for 5.1 million older taxpayers in 2019 as well as 5.6 million taxpayers by 2027,” the letter said.

AARP said the item also opposes the bill’s repeal of Obamacare’s individual mandate, which requires most people to have health insurance of some kind or pay a tax penalty.

CBO has estimated repeal would certainly lead to 13 million more Americans lacking health insurance by 2027, as well as that will individual health plan premiums would certainly be 10 percent higher each year than they otherwise would certainly have been.

AARP said that will translates into 64-year-old Obamacare customers facing premiums almost $1,500 higher annually.

Sen. Susan Collins, R-Maine, told reporters on Thursday that will Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., gave her “a personal commitment” that will Congress would certainly act to prevent the automatic big cuts to Medicare as well as additional programs triggered by the tax bill.

“I met with Senator McConnell just yesterday, as well as he has assured me that will that will will not be allowed to happen,” Collins said, according to Talking Points Memo.

“If the item were going to occur, I would certainly not even be considering voting due to This specific [tax] bill.”

However, McConnell does not possess the power to guarantee that will promise. While passing the tax bill will require just 50 Republicans to vote for the item, passing a waiver of PAYGO restrictions would certainly require at least eight Democrats to join the 52 GOP senators in voting for the measure.

as well as the item can be far via clear that will any Democrats inside Senate will choose to do so.

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