The White House hit back after Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) said he wants to “strengthen” Medicare and Social Security, arguing on Sunday that the House GOP leader and his conference actually want to cut spending on entitlement programs.
McCarthy said in an interview on UKTN’s “Face the Nation” earlier Sunday that he wants to take Medicare and Social Security cuts off the table in talks with Democrats about the debt ceiling, even as Republicans want commitments on spending cuts in general. Instead, McCarthy said Republicans are committed to strengthening the programs.
The strengthening of rights programs enshrined in the Republicans’ “Commitment to America” is vague. One of the legislative recommendations in the plan is that Congress should be “ready to introduce reforms to increase the solvency of the entitlement programs.”
The White House rebuked the speaker’s claim, saying on Sunday that Republicans have wanted to cut earned benefits for years.
“For years, Republicans in Congress have advocated cutting benefits earned by using Washington code words like ‘amplify,’ when their policies would privatize Medicare and Social Security, raise the retirement age or cut benefits,” he said. White House spokesman Andrew Bates in an email. pronunciation. “House Republicans refuse to raise revenue with the wealthy, but insist they will ‘bolster’ earned benefit programs.”
The White House argues that the only option for the GOP to “save” the entitlement programs is to cut spending, as House Republicans have ruled out more revenue from tax hikes on the wealthy.
But McCarthy was adamant that Social Security and Medicare would be off the table in the debt limit talks. McCarthy will meet President Biden on Wednesday in a highly anticipated meeting between the two leaders.