During last year’s budget negotiations, President Obama showed willingness to raise the age of eligibility for Medicare a be less generous in keeping Social Security payments in line with inflation. Such is not the case this year. The White House said Obama will not discuss Social Security because he says it does not contribute much to the deficit. Medicare could see some savings by passing on more of the cost to drug companies and by making the wealthy pay more for coverage. Rep. Jack Welch, D-Vermont, says taxes must increase for the wealthy, but savings should come from efficiencies or bigger contributions from the rich recipients, not benefit cuts.

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