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Senate Proceeding on Jun 15th, 2011 :: 5:47:10 to 5:54:00
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John Cornyn

5:47:03 to 5:47:23( Edit History Discussion )

John Cornyn: actually runs, the medicare program, designed to provide health care to seniors, is going to run out of money in 13 years, five years earlier than projected just last year. medicare trustees noted that medicare's unfunded liabilities -- that is, the

John Cornyn

5:47:10 to 5:54:00( Edit History Discussion )
Speech By: John Cornyn

John Cornyn

5:47:24 to 5:47:45( Edit History Discussion )

John Cornyn: number of -- what it's responsible for, there is a a $24 trillion shortfall, but that that is also growing. so stated another way, this is a a $24 trillion gap between medicare's future benefit costs and the future taxes and premiums that are expected to be

John Cornyn

5:47:46 to 5:48:08( Edit History Discussion )

John Cornyn: collected to pay for it. today, mr. president, i am, along with nearly all of my republican colleagues, sending a letter to the president of the united states insisting that he comply with the law. what law would that be? well, the law that was passed in 2003 that under these circumstances requires the

John Cornyn

5:48:09 to 5:48:30( Edit History Discussion )

John Cornyn: president to propose a plan to deal with this funding crisis for medicare. president obama has said he's willing to make some tough decisions, but yet he refuses to provide concrete and constructive and meaningful

John Cornyn

5:48:31 to 5:48:55( Edit History Discussion )

John Cornyn: proposals to deal with this impending insolvency on one of our most important government programs. medicare trustees have issued a medicare funding warning in their annual report every year since 2006. they're required to do so under the medicare prescription drug improvement and modernization

John Cornyn

5:48:56 to 5:49:17( Edit History Discussion )

John Cornyn: act of 2003. in response to this warning, as i said, the president is required by federal law to submit to congress proposed legislation that would address this funding crisis. president bush in 2008, in response to the 2007 medicare trustees' warning, did exactly what the law requires.

John Cornyn

5:49:18 to 5:49:39( Edit History Discussion )

John Cornyn: he submitted legislation to address this funding crisis. both the house and senate in compliance with the law introduced legislation, but unfortunately it never went anywhere. kicking the can down the road once again. the medicare trustees have, in fact, issued a funding warning

John Cornyn

5:49:40 to 5:50:01( Edit History Discussion )

John Cornyn: every year since 2006, as i mentioned a moment ago, including all three years that president obama has been in office. however, for three years now, president obama and his administration have failed to comply with the mandatory requirement of the law. congress has never received a proposal from president obama's

John Cornyn

5:50:02 to 5:50:24( Edit History Discussion )

John Cornyn: administration to address this funding crisis. this failure, i wish i could tell you, was the result of an oversight, but apparently not. on tuesday, an email to "the hill" newspaper said on behalf of the administration that they believe that this law was --

John Cornyn

5:50:25 to 5:50:46( Edit History Discussion )

John Cornyn: quote -- "advisory and not binding." mr. president, the law itself states, passed by both houses, signed into law, the law of the land, says the president -- quote -- "shall, shall submit legislation to congress," not that he might or if it's convenient or if he finds time

John Cornyn

5:50:47 to 5:51:08( Edit History Discussion )

John Cornyn: or if it advances his political posture leading up to the next election. it says he shall submit legislation. thank goodness we live in a country where no one is above the law. we are a nation of laws. where the law applies to the president of the united states, it applies to among the most humble members of our society.

John Cornyn

5:51:09 to 5:51:30( Edit History Discussion )

John Cornyn: but, mr. president, medicare is going bankrupt. unfortunately, the voices of reform, people stepping forward to try to solve this problem to make meaningful suggestions so we can actually do what we're supposed to do in congress, which is to debate ideas and come up with solutions where we

John Cornyn

5:51:31 to 5:51:52( Edit History Discussion )

John Cornyn: can have a vote, we can send legislation to the president, he can sign it or not sign it. that's the way the process is designed to work, but so far the voices missing from the reform debate are those of our friends on the other side of the aisle. there is no house democrat plan to save medicare.

John Cornyn

5:51:53 to 5:52:14( Edit History Discussion )

John Cornyn: there is no senate democrat plan to save medicare. there is no plan for president obama to save medicare. unfortunately, their plan appears to be not to step up and do what the law requires, to offer a proposal to save

John Cornyn

5:52:15 to 5:52:36( Edit History Discussion )

John Cornyn: medicare, but rather to try to take cynical political advantage leading up to the next election by attacking the very people who are making constructive proposals. now, no one suggests that any single proposal is perfect. the ryan plan is not perfect,

John Cornyn

5:52:37 to 5:52:58( Edit History Discussion )

John Cornyn: the domenici-rivlin plan offers a different approach. the president's own fiscal commission entitled "moment of truth" that reported back in december of 2010, a bipartisan commission appointed by the president himself makes constructive suggestions on how to solve our spending crisis and

John Cornyn

5:52:59 to 5:53:20( Edit History Discussion )

John Cornyn: to address the unsustainability of our entitlement programs. but it appears that rather than embrace any of these constructive ideas, rather than do his duty as the law requires, that the president seems content to scare seniors into opposing responsible reforms while

John Cornyn

5:53:21 to 5:53:41( Edit History Discussion )

John Cornyn: watching the program go bankrupt over the next few years. by refusing to propose needed reforms to this important program, president obama is not only be a did i gating his responsibility -- not only abdicating his responsibility to

John Cornyn

5:53:42 to 5:54:01( Edit History Discussion )

John Cornyn: lead as the president of the united states, he is violating federal law. mr. president, i would ask unanimous consent that following my remarks, a copy of the letter i referred to in my remarks be made part of the record. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. cornyn: i thank and i yield the floor.

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