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President Obama’s health care law extended Medicare for nearly a decade.

Welcome to VoteFacts.  The New York Times has quoted president Obama as saying, "My plan has already extended Medicare for nearly a decade".  We thought readers might want to focus on those facts, so we're doing that today.  Here are the reports from the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) and the Chief Actuary of the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS):

• The assets of the Hospital Insurance trust fund would have been exhausted in 2017 under prior law.  CMS, Page 9, Para 3

• Under current law - including the provisions of the new health care law - the balance of the Medicare Hospital Insurance (HI) trust fund will be exhausted in 2022, CBO Projects.  CBO, top of Page 126

• According to CMS, the estimated exhaustion date for the Medicare HI trust fund remains at 2024, the same year shown in last year's report. As in past years, the Trustees have determined that the fund is not adequately financed over the next 10 years.  CMS, Page 6, Para 4

The projected exhaustion year before the law was 2017, and depending on which report you focus on, the CBO or CMS, new exhaustion dates are 2022 or 2024 - an extension of 5-7 years.  It is important to remember that the extended exhaustion dates are predicated upon the large provider rate reductions scheduled to happen in 2013.  If those cuts do not happen, the exhaustion date will be sooner.  The last budget proposal by the president called for avoiding those provider cuts.

Do you agree that the president's plan constitutes an extension of nearly a decade?  Vote now.

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VoteFacts original post date:  August 20, 2012

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