Extending Unemployment Benefits, Protecting Medicare Services Essential

From a Rep. Nick Rahall Release

WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Rep. Nick J. Rahall Monday issued the following statement in advance of the U.S. House of Representatives considering legislation to continue the Social Security payroll tax cut and extend unemployment benefits, and to avert a nearly 27 percent cut in Medicare reimbursement rates through February 29, 2012:

 “While most agree that a long-term fix would be preferable, at this late date, there is no sensible alternative other than to pass the two-month extension bill.  If we continue to monkey around with this extension, it will endanger not only unemployment benefits for those who have lost their jobs but could also potentially disrupt health care services to seniors in our region by allowing scheduled cuts in Medicare reimbursements for physicians to go into effect.

“The Social Security payroll tax cut should be extended, as well.  Despite suggestions to the contrary, the Social Security actuary confirms that the payroll tax cut in this bill poses no danger to the Social Security trust funds – none whatsoever.  

“This debate in the House is a farce mistakenly calculated to gain short-term partisan advantage.  It is not worthy of the U.S. House of Representatives and will only further erode the American People’s confidence in their government to put the good of the country above political self-interest.”

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