Dean Baker attempts to associate former Bush Budget Director (need I say more?) and current US Senator Rob Portman with the facts. Too bad Republicans don't care about facts. Go read the whole thing if you do.--SS
Letter to Sen. Portman: 'Entitlement Reform' Means Cuts to Social Security, Medicare Benefits | Social Security Monitor:
...the non-partisan Congressional Budget Office projects that even if Congress makes no changes to the program at all, Social Security can pay full scheduled benefits through the year 2034 and over three-quarters of scheduled benefits for the rest of the century. The shortfall that remains is equivalent to only about 0.6 percent of our GDP, which could be easily made up with common-sense solutions, such as applying the Social Security payroll tax to income above $113,700.
Medicare is projected to be able to pay full benefits through the year 2024 and the long-term projected shortfall has decreased by more than two-thirds, due to cost controls put in place by the Affordable Care Act. In addition, the latest projections of Medicare spending from 2011 to 2020 have dropped by $500 billion. The main reason for Medicare's long-term deficits is that we pay twice as much per person for health care as in other developed nations, without better health outcomes to show for it. In fact, if we could get our health care costs down to their levels, for example by allowing the government to negotiate Medicare prescription drug prices, then we'd be looking at budget surpluses, not deficits, in the future.