Sunday, March 06, 2005

What's worse than creating a new $7 trillion entitlement just to buy a few votes?

Creating your new $7 trillion entitlement in such a dumbass way that it will cost you maybe a couple million votes and the next election.

Deroy Murdock tells the tale...
... Amazingly enough, reckless Republicans unwittingly timed this program to jeopardize their November 2006 electoral prospects.

Rather than simply help poor, uninsured seniors, Republicans designed a mind-boggling contraption that reimburses 75 percent of the first $2,000 in pharmaceutical outlays after a $250 deductible. Then payments stop until spending hits $5,100, whereupon 95 percent reimbursements commence. This gap is nicknamed "the doughnut hole."

Some seniors, even those with private prescription coverage, will receive these benefits next January, then disappear into the doughnut hole before the midterm congressional elections. Their subsidies would not resume until 2007.

In a study released Thursday morning titled "
Weird Science: Projecting the Effects of Medicare’s Odd Drug Benefit Design," Heritage Foundation Visiting Research Fellow Edmund F. Haislmaier estimates the dates at which seniors with various levels of drug expenses enter the doughnut hole and exit it, if at all.

Based on his calculations, at least 4,113,414 seniors will tumble down the doughnut hole and remain there on Election Day 2006 ...

How many seniors will vote Republican after enjoying GOP drug discounts that suddenly vanish until suddenly vanish at least until election eve?...