McConnell says sunsetting Social Security, Medicare is a 'Rick Scott plan' onlyFebruary 10, 2023
Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-K.Y.) said in an interview on Thursday a proposed initiative to sunset Social Security and Medicare was not a “Republican plan,” but one proposed and supported only by fellow Sen. Rick Scott (R-Fla.).
Scott, who was unsuccessful in his run against McConnell for the top seat in the National Republican Senatorial Committee, proposed a plan in 2022 to sunset all federal legislation after five years, forcing Congress to reauthorize them.
“Unfortunately, that was the Scott plan, that’s not a Republican plan,” McConnell told Terry Meiners on his self-titled podcast, noting that Republicans never planned to implement Scott’s policy, even if they had won the majority in November.
“So it’s clearly the Rick Scott plan, it is not the Republican plan,” McConnell reiterated. “And that’s the view of the Speaker of the House as well.”
So it’s clearly the Rick Scott plan, it is not the Republican plan. And that’s the view of the Speaker of the House as well.Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell
McConnell said that because he and House Speaker Kevin McCarthy were in GOP leadership positions, they had more authority to “state what the position of the party is than any single senator.”
Calling Scott’s plan “a bad idea,” McConnell echoed McCarthy’s promises that the programs wouldn’t be touched, drawing attention instead to the Florida senator’s upcoming election.
“I think it will be a challenge for him to deal with this in his own reelection in Florida,” McConnell quipped, adding that it is “a state with more elderly people than any other state in America.”
The issue was brought back to light on Tuesday night when President Biden criticized the Republican Party for Scott’s proposed plan in his annual State of the Union address.
Scott, in response, invited Biden on Thursday to debate the issue while the president was in his home state.
“Since you can’t stop talking about me and lying to Floridians about Social Security and Medicare, I’m sure you’ll accept my invitation to debate the issue,” Scott wrote on Twitter. “I’ll be back in Florida tonight. You pick the time and place.”
There is no Republican that I know of, and certainly not one on Capitol Hill, who has ever suggested sunsetting Social Security and Medicare.GOP Rep. Mike Johnson
House Republicans also spoke out against the president’s comments, including Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-Ga.), who could be heard calling him a “liar” during the Tuesday night address.
“I’m not one that’s into catcalls, but I understand the emotion that’s involved in that when you hear the president of the United States saying something that he knows is simply not true,” Rep. Mike Johnson (R-La.) said following Biden’s speech.
“There is no Republican that I know of, and certainly not one on Capitol Hill, who has ever suggested sunsetting Social Security and Medicare,” he added.
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