Amidst a national debate about the future of so-called entitlement programs, President Obama offered a stirring defense of Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid. “We are a better country because of these commitments,” he said at George Washington University. “I’ll go further – we would not be a great country without those commitments.”
“I will not allow Medicare to become a voucher program that leaves seniors at the mercy of the insurance industry, with a shrinking benefit to pay for rising costs.”
Obama said the deficit was significantly exacerbated by the Bush tax cuts for high income earners, and promised to rescind them. “We made the problem worse with trillions of dollars in unpaid-for tax cuts,” he said, “tax cuts that went to every millionaire and billionaire in the country; tax cuts that will force us to borrow an average of $500 billion every year over the next decade. ”
“We cannot afford $1 trillion worth of tax cuts for every millionaire and billionaire in our society,” he said. “And I refuse to renew them again.”
Obama vigorously defended liberalism at various points in the speech, making a case for the role of government as a force for good.
(Source: RawStory.com and CNN)