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Right now -- seventy days before Election Day a presidential race that is a dead heat and debt issues increasingly on voters' minds.
Governor Mitt Romney's vice presidential pick Paul Ryan has brought entitlement spending to the forefront of the campaign some argue.
Honest conversations about reining in spending could hurt the GOP.
Others say America is ready for an honest conversation about things like social security and Medicare.
Let's get into the debate -- -- stack former democratic democratic congressman from Pennsylvania.
Also match slap former White House political director under president George W.
Matt first of all do you agree with the premise that up till now talking entitlements was poisonous for Republican candidates.
Yet John I think you're exactly right I mean history has shown us that -- ballot box that when it look like Republicans just wanna to raid Medicare.
For other programs are for tax cuts or whatever.
They got themselves into trouble.
But what we're noticing over the course of the last couple days and weeks ever since Paul Ryan's been added to the ticket.
We've had a national conversation.
About entitlements about Medicare about the Ryan budget.
And from all the polls -- seen including the one you talked about earlier.
Looks like things are looking better for Romney right congressman says -- what about that is is you know -- Ryan I'm sorry Mitt Romney has said that we think we as in you know his team thinks they can talk about Medicare they can argue the point and they think they can win the argument.
-- -- -- -- -- Well I think it's a debate we have to have to look when you look at the respective sides in this they both agree on one thing.
They both -- both president -- mr.
and Paul Ryan's plan Medicare growth both to point 5% GDP.
Where they differ on the debate we have to have is how do we go about we -- -- the -- So Republicans are gonna have to go to the citizens and say we believe that more -- can be on the private market and that will help control cost but they're going to have to answer the question.
That private insurance companies already provide 25% of all Medicare and yet they charge 20% on average more than normal Medicare.
On the democratic side they're gonna have to answer the question that they can control spending.
By changing the incentive of doctors and hospitals so no longer do they play pay fee for service.
So let them -- father -- had a heart operation -- left in today's -- -- back -- with a staph infection.
Two separate fees are given to that hospital and that doctor Bradley saying he didn't take -- the quality of my father's health care that's the transformation Democrats.
-- argue will better control costs -- this debate that we have to have because we've got to control this and it cost for the good of overall America.
Yeah -- met the Republicans side is saying look we're not the ones who want to you know rip off for change Medicare the president has already taken 716.
From Medicare are they making on it you know are they winning that argument.
Well I think all the polls showed that they -- if you look at President Obama he was caught with this hand in the cookie jar.
He took over 700 billion dollars away from spending for.
Health care on the on our seniors and used it to pay for health care for Americans.
Who are younger who have never paid into a program to get health care he made his decision that was a political decision.
To try to help folks that don't have.
Insurance in this country but he did at the wrong way he did it by making Medicare even less stable in regard he has remember this -- -- program that if we don't take major steps it's gonna go bag correct.
Within two decades so these are steps that we have to take as a country I was just sets that -- storm -- -- we get -- more Republicans and Democrats to reach across the aisle to do something.
Mitt Romney's going to do that.
We're supposed to be having a debate here not not this agreement -- But I think -- Romney has demonstrated since he supported state mandated health insurance of the Massachusetts that he might have the ability -- -- -- the out.
-- my good friend Matt is here today was a beautiful daughter Lisa.
I've got to tell you there was a little difference of why I voted for that bill.
What we did is said you know you private health insurance companies you're providing Medicare Advantage to -- season 20% more cost.
The regular Medicare we said you could still -- it.
But you -- do -- the same cost that was almost 300 million dollars the other 400 maintained that we said you've got another thirty million customers private health care companies.
Because of the new Obama care and you're like Wal-Mart if you get a lot more customers you -- have a large floor margin to make more profit.
And we said that's just there it was a good business sense -- -- we might be able to have good private efficiency.
Even through Medicare now now -- we have a debate now because the so it was brought well the debate is on.
We're gonna have to come back and let you finish at another time former congressman Joseph stack from the democratic side match -- from the Republican -- thank you both.
And we'll be right back.
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