(LONDON) — Vice President Joe Biden pointed to Rep. Paul Ryan’s budget as an example of Republicans adhering to a “different value set” than Democrats when it comes to reforming Social Security and Medicare, issues that he called “a family affair”
“I’m not playing the game, you know, these guys are bad guys. They just have a different value set as to what is the most important thing that we should be doing,” Biden said of congressional Republicans during the White House Community Leaders briefing on senior issues Monday.
“Folks, we’d be much better off if we spent a lot less energy fighting off efforts to dismantle Medicare, Medicaid, get rid of the Affordable Health Care Act, and more time working to figure out how to provide better health for the American people and preserve Medicare and Medicaid,” he later said.
The vice president cited a phrase used by his father: “Don’t tell me what you value; Show me your budget, and I will tell you what you value,” and argued that the Ryan budget and Republicans’ eagerness to extend the Bush tax cuts show the GOP is willing to sacrifice the interests and well being of senior citizens in order to extend tax cuts to the wealthy in America.
“They’ve made a clear choice: lower the standard of living for those on Medicare and Medicaid rather than ask anything of the wealthiest among us,” Biden said.
Biden highlighted how the various versions of the Ryan budget would affect senior citizens, saying it “dismantled Medicare” and was “overwhelmingly rejected by the American people.”
“This year, they came back with one that’s more subtle, but it really didn’t change. It didn’t change the core of what they want to do. They’re still pushing Medicare vouchers, it’s a plan that would still mean higher cost for almost everyone who depends on Medicare. And that goes for Medicaid too,” he continued.
While he stressed that he was not saying Republicans “don’t care about the elderly,” Biden did accuse them of placing future generations in jeopardy by not working with Democrats to properly reform the existing Medicare and Social Security systems that exist today.
Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio
Tom LoBianco, CNN
David Chalian, CNN
Jim Acosta and Daniella Diaz, CNN