Rep. Steve Israel (D., N.Y.) claimed Medicare is not going bankrupt on CNBC's "Squawk Box" Tuesday:
LARRY KUDLOW: But Steve, President Obama wants to lower corporate rates. Let me ask you this—I know we disagree and it’s great fun—on Medicare itself, when you say Ryan wants to do away with Medicare, you’re not being fair, you’re not being truthful. Ryan is saying the existing Medicare system is an option; he’s just grafting onto this hybrid, with Sen. Ron Wyden, a Democrat, so that you can have some choice in the calculation.
KUDLOW: And as Michelle Caruso-Cabrera said, nothing changes for anybody who’s 55 years or older. I mean, isn’t that a starting point? We know Medicare’s going bankrupt, sir—something’s gotta happen. What’s you’re plan?
ISRAEL: One, Medicare’s not going bankrupt. Two--
CARUSO-CABRERA: Repeat that. Tell me that again.
ISRAEL: Medicare is not going bankrupt. And the plan that they produced actually asks seniors to be the first to sacrifice. Now, again—
CARUSO-CABRERA: So Medicare does not need to be reformed in any way? Does Medicare need to be reformed in any way?
ISRAEL: No, no, you’re putting words in my mouth.
CARUSO-CABRERA: No, I’m asking you, does Medicare need reform?
ISRAEL: Yes. We will negotiate improvements to Medicare, strengthening Medicare, but not by asking seniors to be the first ones to sacrifice.
The annual report from the Medicare trustees for 2011 states, "Medicare’s HI Trust Fund is expected to pay out more in hospital benefits and other expenditures than it receives in income in all future years."