Latest in the Donald Trump parade of offspring at the Republican National Convention is his namesake Donald Trump Jr. Most of the night was spent on Hillary Clinton rather than Donald Trump however, and Trump Jr.’s speech was no exception. One claim raised my eyebrows immediately and set me to furious Googling.
“We’re going to elect a President … who will repeal and replace Obamacare without leaving our most vulnerable citizens without health care,” Trump Jr. said, “and who will do it without destroying Medicare for seniors as Hillary Clinton has proposed.”
If that doesn’t sound like something that Hillary Clinton has proposed it is because she hasn’t. In fact she has proposed to expand Medicare, in some cases allowing people aged 50 to 55 to join Medicare.
Opponents of Hillary Clinton and a single payer health care expansion could see this proposal as a adding millions of potential patients in an entitlement program that is already stretched to the limit. In Medicare’s current form it is expected to become insolvent by 2028. Adding all of those younger people to the group could cause Medicare to crash and burn.
But Medicare is extremely popular. Its budget and bounds have been expanded by nearly every President since its inception, including Republicans Nixon, Reagan and George W. Bush. Including younger people in the program, for which they would have to pay a premium, is unlikely to jeopardize the 65+ crowd that is already covered. Sherry Glied, health policy advisor at NYU told Polifact that “there have been lots of proposals of this type in past and not much concern about the effects on traditional Medicare, assuming premiums are set correctly,” Glied said, adding it “raised no concerns about effects on the program as a whole.”
Donald Trump Jr. said that Hillary Clinton wants to destroy Medicare while she is actually proposing to expand a popular health care program to millions of more Americans. Clearly Donald Trump Jr. has learned a lot about honesty from his father.