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Ryancare vs. Obamacare: The Future of Medicare is at Stake

When Mitt Romney named Paul Ryan as his vice-presidential nominee, the Medicare battle jumped to the front and center of election 2012.

First introduced in 2010, "The Ryan Budget" is a bold plan that attempts to reduce the deficit by drastically cutting spending-which some claim will "cripple" Medicare.

So what is the truth?....

Ryancare vs Obamacare

Though the plans differ in ideology, Obamacare and Ryancare actually have some similarities.

In Ryan's plan, new enrollees after 2022 would have to choose between a private insurance plan and Medicare, making Medicare the "public option" that was so opposed in Obamacare.

Ryan's plan gives Medicare enrollees vouchers to choose from competing private insurance plans offered on a Medicare exchange. These exchanges closely resemble the exchanges in Obamacare that some Republican governors have refused to participate in.

And both plans basically "cut" the program by over $700 billion and set a growth cap on Medicare spending at GDP levels plus 0.5%.

The difference in the plans is how these cuts are made and why.

As Ezra Klein of the Washington Post says, "Democrats believe the best way to reform Medicare is to leave the program intact but vastly strengthen its ability to pay for quality. Republicans believe the best way to reform Medicare is to fracture the system between private plans and traditional Medicare and let competition do its work."

The only problem is that neither of these plans may do enough to fix Medicare.

The biggest misconception with Ryan's plan is that current senior citizens will be faced with outrageous healthcare costs.

That is simply not true.

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