As a candidate for Congress, Doug Ose is trying to mislead Sacramento County seniors into thinking he will protect their benefits; but as a Congressman, Doug Ose voted to gamble their retirements on Wall Street. As former Congressman Ose stated at a meeting this January, "past behavior is the best indication of future behavior," and he can't run away from his votes to gamble seniors' retirements on Wall Street and to increase Medicare costs for vulnerable seniors.
"Former Congressman Ose voted to gamble seniors' Social Security benefits on Wall Street and wants to end the Medicare guarantee for seniors -- and now he hopes Sacramento County seniors will have short memories," said Bera spokesperson Allison Teixeira. "Actions speak louder than words and Ose's Congressional record and campaign speak volumes. If Doug Ose truly wants to protect our seniors' retirements, he should denounce the commercial from Crossroads GPS, a group founded by Social Security privatization mastermind Karl Rove, and return the $5000 he received from the group chaired by Paul Ryan, who's plan would end the Medicare guarantee."
Ose: “I Oppose Any Proposal to Privatize Social Security.” In 2014, Ose submitted a candidate statement for the sample ballot that highlighted his opposition to privatization of Social Security. Ose: “And lastly, I oppose any proposal to privatize Social Security. Seniors need to be assured that their retirement savings and Medicare are secure. They’ve earned it.” [Sacramento County Sample Ballot, accessed 5/08/14]
…But Voted for Taking $600 Billion from Social Security to Pay for Privatization. In 2001, Ose voted in favor of a budget that critics said used about $600 billion of the Social Security surplus to fund new privatized retirement accounts for stock market investment. The budget passed 222-205. [H Con Res 83, Vote #70, 3/28/01; House Budget Committee, Democratic Caucus, 3/27/01; Rep. Bentsen, Congressional Record, page. 4849, 3/28/01]
…And Claimed that the Plan was “Responsible” and “Protect[ed] Social Security.” In 2001, Ose called the Bush budget a “responsible budget” that “protect[ed] Social Security… and preserve[d] Medicare.” “This is a blueprint of a ‘New Beginning’ for this country and I look forward to working with President Bush on delivering these priorities,” Ose said. [The Reporter, 3/01/01]
Voted Against Amendment that Would have Stopped Social Security Privatization. In 2001, Ose voted against an amendment that would have stopped the White House from implementing the Social Security privatization plan being developed by President Bush’s Social Security Commission. A vote in favor of the amendment was to deny fiscal 2002 funding to advance the commission report. The Bush Commission recommended three possible plans, all of which privatized Social Security. Privatizing Social Security would require an increase in Social Security taxes or a return to the days of deficit spending, or a reduction in guaranteed benefits to pay for transition costs in the trillions. The amendment was defeated 188-238. [HR 2590, Vote #273, 7/25/01; USA Today, 5/15/01; Dallas Morning News, 5/07/01]
EVP of National Committee to Preserve Social Security and Medicare: Each Proposal would “Require Specific, Massive Cuts in Defined Benefits – Even for Those who Do Not Opt for Voluntary Accounts.” In December 2001, Max Richtman, executive vice president of the National Committee to Preserve Social Security and Medicare, said of the Commission’s proposals, “Each of the proposals put forward by the commission require specific, massive cuts in defined benefits - even for those who do not opt for the voluntary accounts.” [National Committee to Preserve Social Security & Medicare press release, 12/11/01] The Alliance for Retired Americans gave Doug Ose a 0% rating his last three years in Congress [Alliance for Retired Americans Congressional Scorecards http://retiredamericans.org/issues/congressional-voting-record]
2002: Supported Allowing Workers to Invest Payroll Taxes in Private Accounts. In 2002, Ose supported “allow[ing] workers to invest a portion of their payroll tax in private accounts” managed by “private firms contracted by the government” or “themselves.” [Project Vote Smart, 2002 National Political Awareness Test]
2005: Securities Industry Association Reported Wall Street Would Generate $279 Billion in Fees from Privatization. In February 2005, Newsday wrote, “No one knows whether workers would prosper in private Social Security accounts, but financial firms would likely pull in big bucks… The Securities Industry Association calculated that the plan would generate at most $279 billion in fees, or about 8.6 percent of the $3.3 trillion in the financial sector’s total revenues, over 75 years.” [Newsday, 2/20/05]
Ose took $5,000 from Paul Ryan’s PAC. In 2014: Ose took $5,000 from Prosperity Action, the political action committee of Congressman Paul Ryan. [FEC.gov, 6/30/14]. Paul Ryan is the architect of the budget that the Wall Street Journal said would “essentially end Medicare.” [Wall Street Journal, 4/4/2011]
Ose Would Reopen the Prescription Drug Donut Hole-- Closing the Donut Hole Saved California Seniors an Average of $883 in 2014. According to a June 2014 Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) report, in 2014, 139,965 California seniors saved an average of $883 each in closing the Medicare Part D “Donut Hole.” [CMS, June 2014]
The Affordable Care Act Closed the Donut Hole, Saving $1,400 Per Beneficiary. A Washington Post blog reported that “the Obama administration has announced that because the ACA closed the Medicare prescription drug ‘donut hole,’ since 2010, over 8 million seniors and disabled people have saved a total of $11.5 billion on medications, or an average of over $1,400 per beneficiary.” [Washington Post, 7/30/2014]
CMMS: The Affordable Care Act has Saved 7.3 Million Seniors Nearly $883 Billion in Prescription Drug Coverage. “According to the Centers for Medicaid and Medicare Services, 7.3 million people who reached the ‘doughnut hole’ in their Medicare prescription drug coverage have saved $8.9 billion on their prescription drugs since the law was enacted in 2010. That’s an average savings of $1,209 per person. The ‘doughnut hole’ refers to the gap in prescription drug coverage in which seniors must shoulder the full costs. Coverage under Medicare Part D provides an initial coverage limit on insurance and catastrophic coverage once costs hit a certain threshold. In between, seniors must pay the full costs.” [The Hill, 11/26/13]
Wall Street Journal: The ACA Closed Donut Hole through “Steady Discounts.” According to a 2013 report in the Wall Street Journal, “since 2010, the tab on your doughnut-hole drugs has dropped through steady discounts. Next year, expect to pay 47.5% of the price of brand-name drugs and 72% of the tab for generic drugs. By 2020, Obamacare will declare the doughnut hole closed and you will continue to cover just 25% of both brand-name and generic drug costs.” [Wall Street Journal, 10/06/2013]
Doug Ose Supports Repealing the Affordable Care Act. In January 2014, Doug Ose spoke about his support for repealing the ACA. Ose stated, “I’ve got a lifetime of experience there, that people there know me, and they’ve invested in what I’m talking about which is fix the economy, repeal Obamacare, and get this country back on the right path.” [UC Davis Republicans, 01/29/2014 at [10:20]]
Ose Holds Up To $1,280,000 of Stock in Companies That Would Benefit From Repeal of the ACA. According to his most recent financial disclosure, Ose has hundreds of thousands of dollars invested in companies that would benefit the most if the ACA were repealed. As Bloomberg BusinessWeek reported in February 2014, companies that would benefit from the repeal of the ACA include “medical device manufacturers, which the ACA saddles with a 2.3 percent excise tax; assisted-living and home health-care providers, which will suffer from reduced Medicare and Medicaid reimbursement rates; and medical diagnostics equipment and services providers, which may encounter reduced demand as a result of the law’s efforts to curb unnecessary testing.” Ose currently has between $597,000 and $1,280,000 invested in such companies. [Bloomberg Businessweek, 2/20/2014; Ose 2004 Personal Financial Disclosure, 7/14/2004]
Dr. Ami Bera represents Sacramento County in Congress. He’s working to make Congress a place for service and fighting to rebuild an economy that works for middle class families. As a leader of the No Labels Problem Solvers, Bera is leading the charge to find bipartisan solutions to our nation’s challenges.