Morning Read: Doheny, Owens engage on Medicare

The last couple of days, we’ve seen a real engagement in the NY21 race on the issue of Medicare.  Our Julie Grant went in first, with a story focusing on the national Republican Party’s ad campaign on the issue.

Her piece lays out clearly some of the broad philosophical and policy differences that surround this complex debate.

The story advanced when the Doheny camp put out a statement laying out their their idea about reforming Medicare, which prompted stories like this one from Brian Amaral in the Watertown Daily Times.

The back and forth on the entitlement that is both popular and costly highlighted a basic philosophical difference between the candidates on the senior health insurance program: Mr. Doheny believes in increasing the role of private insurers, while Mr. Owens does not.

Chris Morris at the Adirondack Daily Enterprise also weighed in, responding to Doheny’s position statement.

In his commentary, Doheny said he wasn’t putting forth a plan.  “Instead, these are some ideas I’d like to see incorporated in any bipartisan effort put before Congress,” he said.

Doheny said patient choice is important. He said recipients who like the current “fee-for-service system” should be able to keep using it, but he added that Medicare should also welcome competition. He said it’s been proven that market forces keep costs from escalating.

This is clearly an issue that the Owens camp wanted to have raised in this campaign — they’ve been sending out press releases regularly accusing Doheny of wanting to “privatize” Medicare. I expect this will come up again in next week’s debates.

In the meantime, these stories will give you a clearer sense of what the politicians are talking about, and what they really mean.  Check them out and then chime in with your views on Medicare and reform efforts below.

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11 Comments on “Morning Read: Doheny, Owens engage on Medicare”

  1. Rumor has it that there are actually three candidates in this race.

    Some more responsible media outlets – the Adirondack Daily Enterprise comes to mind – are putting aside their biases and actually reporting regularly what ALL the candidates are saying, rather than ignoring a third of them.

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  2. It's Still All Bush's Fault says:

    It was good to hear this morning that Don Hassig will be taking part in the upcoming debates. He will provide an additional and important perspective.

    Like/Dislike this comment: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 2

  3. Brian Mann says:

    Brian – This is getting dull repeating, but I suppose it’s necessary.

    1. The Green Party candidate in this race has said explicitly that he isn’t running to win office. He himself has acknowledged that he is simply a citizen using the election process to spread a message about his environmental beliefs.

    2. That said, on this issue the Green Party candidate has not taken a public position on Medicare.

    –Brian, NCPR

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  4. Brian Mann says:

    Partial correction: chris morris points out that he did talk to Hassig about hi positions, but got a more general answer about health care. Read about it a Chris’s ADE blog here;

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  5. Peter Hahn says:

    Medicare already pays below cost. How is competition going to drive down costs more?

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  6. Yes, it is getting tiresome since NCPR (and most media outlets) does this for all non-GOP/Dem candidates… except for people running on fake party lines who are actually GOP/Dems.

    I will add that the ADE has good coverage of all the candidates. They report the all the candidates’ views and let readers decide for themselves, like a media outlet should.

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  7. tootightmike says:

    Don Hassig is a good guy, and his heart is in the right place…but he’s a nut-bar and everyone who’s met him politely nods in agreement. If only we could get a real candidate to support the same positions,
    I look forward to the next election. In 2014 the Greens and the Progressives will go head to head with the Democrats to decide how many wind farms and tidal generators will be built with the former military”s budget…then maybe we’ll move forward.

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  8. Or Brian, how about this… even if you casually dismiss Hassig for the reasons you mentioned, what is your excuse for ignoring, say, presidential candidates Jill Stein, Rocky Anderson or Gary Johnson? All of them are “in it to win it,” so to speak. All of them are, I believe, on enough ballots to have a mathematical chance in the electoral college. Your reasons for ignoring Hassig don’t apply to them, yet it’s all Obamney all the time in this blog. I challenge you to report/blog about them.

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  9. mervel says:

    Hassig is a criminal who does not deserve any attention at all, he is not a serious candidate and it is unfortunate that the Green’s have anything to do with him. But I know it is hard finding anyone willing to be on the ticket, but in this case it would have been better to have no one.

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  10. Whatever “crime” Hassig may have committed pales in comparison to the unindicted crimes of Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld and that cabal. Priorities.

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  11. mervel says:

    oh jeesh I don’t want to get into personal stuff with this guy so I won’t. I just wish the Green’s had a real candidate, they are really hurting themselves here.

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