Republican Congressman Jim Nussle and his Democrat opponent, Ann Hutchinson, differ on the best way to fix the government program that provides health care to the nation’s elderly. Hutchinson, who’s Bettendorf’s Mayor, says Medicare must be completely overhauled.Hutchinson says you shouldn’t just tweak the system. Hutchinson says Nussle and Iowa’s other Republican Congressmen have failed to fix the problem.Nussle, who is chairman of the House Budget Committee, says Hutchinson’s naive as the large states which benefit from the current reimbursement plan won’t abide by an overhaul. Nussle says only the incremental kind of change he’s proposed will pass the House, where large states have 320 votes against any plan to overhaul the system and take money away from urban areas.Nussle says true reform of the system must come from the U-S Senate, where large states don’t hold the power they do in the U-S House, where membership is based on population. Nussle says Republicans in 1995 proposed a massive “overhaul” of the Medicare system, but Democrats then opposed such a move. Nussle says republicans have been castigated and blamed for throwing seniors into the streets for asking to overhaul the Medicare system over the last eight years. Nussle says the democrats in Iowa are now all of a sudden calling for an overhaul. He says it’s the height of hypocrisy.Nussle and Hutchinson are competing to represent Iowa’s First District in Congress, a district that includes Davenport, Dubuque and Waterloo.
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