Fasano blames Malloy for adoption of Medicare program cuts

The Day editorial board is wrong to accuse others of amnesia when they are unaware to certain facts themselves "Can’t ignore deficit when restoring Medicare Savings Program," Dec. 14. 

A recent editorial in The Day chastised Senator Paul Formica for a Medicaid cut lawmakers are working to correct in the bipartisan state budget, when Sen. Formica is the very person who has been sounding the alarm, fighting to restore this funding and finding solutions.

In light of this ill-informed attack, I have to set the record straight.

The Day editorial is correct that the Medicare Savings Program reduction was first proposed by Gov. Malloy, but the editorial ignores the fact that the legislature was provided information on the Medicare Savings Program by Gov. Malloy that turned out to be wrong. The reduction in eligibility to the MSP program was initially estimated by the governor’s office to impact a far smaller number of individuals who officials said could be assisted by other programs and state support. What the governor told lawmakers to expect isn’t what happened, which is the point Sen. Formica was making when he spoke to a group of seniors in New London about this program, one of his many recent meetings with seniors across the state.

The Day's editorial assumes that legislators are planning to restore funding for this program without making cuts elsewhere. That’s false. The very reason why it took so long to reach a bipartisan agreement to restore this funding was because we had to come up with a plan to find an equal level of savings elsewhere that all four caucuses could agree to. 

Thanks to the advocacy of people like Senator Formica, legislative leaders all recognize we were wrong to include the governor’s cut to this program and we took responsibility by working together on a solution. The Day editorial board suggesting we should now wait to adopt this fix until a full bipartisan deficit mitigation plan is ready – which could take months – shows that they are the ones who misunderstand the extent of the anxiety thousands of seniors and disabled individuals are now facing. We are working against the clock, we have a solution that’s ready to go, why hold it hostage?

Len Fasano is the Senate Republican President Pro Tempore. He lives in North Haven.

 

 

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