Congressional Republicans agreed to a non-binding budget framework yesterday that would slow projected growth of Medicare, but not completely restructure the program as the House GOP wanted.
House Republicans tried to use the budget process to fundamentally rewrite Medicare, turning it from an open-ended entitlement program to a model known as premium support. But the move was blocked by Senate Republicans, who feared a political firestorm.
In the premium support model, the federal government would provide a fixed subsidy (or a voucher) to help seniors buy insurance on the open market. Participants would gradually pay a much greater share of the program cost than they do today.