But Republicans say that they’ve stepped out of their comfort zone by even discussing revenue hikes, and that in return Democrats must talk about sweeping entitlement changes. What sorts of changes? Consider the provisions of a 10-year, $4.5 trillion deficit-cutting plan that Sen. Bob Corker (R) of Tennessee is currently circulating. He calls for a gradual increase in the Social Security retirement age to 68 and in the Medicare eligibility age to 67, plus a less generous mechanism for adjusting Social Security outlays due to inflation, among other things.
The GOP also wants provisions of the Affordable Care Act, aka “Obamacare,” revisited.
“It’s ridiculous to suggest that we make changes to Medicare and Medicaid, while leaving $1.6 trillion in new Obamacare spending untouched,” said Senator McConnell on Tuesday.
The White House, for its part, continues to make noises about the big entitlement programs, saying they’re on the table as part of a multipart deficit solution that also includes increased revenue.