WASHINGTON, July 31 -- Rep. Jan Schakowsky, D-Ill. (9th CD), issued the following news release:
On Wednesday, Members of the House Democratic Caucus Seniors Task Force celebrated the 49th anniversary of Medicare and Medicaid by heralding recent efforts to strengthen these programs, and promising to fight efforts to roll back program benefits. Signed into law on July 30, 1965 by President Lyndon B. Johnson, Medicare and Medicare provide nearly 117 million elderly, disabled, and low-income Americans - including more than 26 million children - with health insurance that would otherwise be out of reach. Joined by more than 50 seniors and members of the Medicare/Medicaid community, Seniors Task Force Members pledged to protect and strengthen the programs for generations to come.
"Medicare is a bedrock promise to our nation's seniors: that after a lifetime of work, Americans can count on the stability of reliable, affordable, high-quality health insurance," said House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi. "As we mark Medicare's 49th birthday, the Affordable Care Act is continuing to build a healthier and stronger future for our seniors by improving the quality of care and lowering costs. While Democrats work to strengthen and protect Medicare and Medicaid for generations to come, Republicans are fighting to end the Medicare guarantee and to slash and block grant Medicaid."
"The 49th anniversary of Medicare and Medicaid gives us a lot to celebrate. Together, these vital programs serve more than 115 million elderly, disabled, children and low income Americans - providing long-term services and preventing medical bankruptcies. Through the Affordable Care Act we have strengthened both programs. In the face of Republican threats to cut these landmark programs we will continue to do everything necessary to protect Medicare and Medicaid for sake of our seniors and for future generations," said Congresswoman Jan Schakowsky.
"When President Lyndon Johnson signed Medicare and Medicaid into law 49 years ago today, it guaranteed that older Americans would have access to the quality care they need, regardless of their health status or income. My Democratic colleagues and I are committed to keeping these lifesaving programs strong for generations to come. This includes preserving the Affordable Care Act, which strengthens Medicare, and fighting against efforts to cut benefits and shift costs to seniors and their families. The stakes for America's seniors, and future generations, are too great not to act," said Congresswoman Doris Matsui.