"I've offered sensible reforms to Medicare and other entitlements, and my health care proposals achieve the same amount of savings by the beginning of the next decade as the reforms that have been proposed by" a bipartisan commission, the president said.
Among them is a measure to slow the annual rise in benefits under Social Security and a variety of other government programs — an approach many congressional Democrats have opposed and like to use as a weapon against Republicans when they suggest it.
McConnell's office noted that the Senate's top Republican leader proposed "more than $100 billion in bipartisan spending reductions" in last winter's talks, some related to Medicare. All were rejected by the administration, the statement added, including a $30 billion item that tracked a proposal Obama had advanced requiring wealthier Medicare beneficiaries to pay more for their care.
EDITOR'S NOTE — David Espo is chief congressional correspondent for The Associated Press.
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