Not a single candidate in 2016 campaigned on a promise to repeal and replace Social Security or Medicare. Anyone who did would have been soundly defeated. Indeed, unlike the Republican opponents he beat, Donald Trump promised not to touch Social Security, Medicare, or Medicaid. But now that the Republicans will soon be in charge of all branches of government, destroying Social Security and Medicare is on the top of their agenda.
Two days after the election, Paul Ryan said, “With a unified Republican government, we can actually get things done.” One of those things is ending Medicare as we know it, as I and others have spotlighted. It turns out that Social Security is in the Republicans’ cross hairs, as well. This is not a surprise. Ending Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid is Republican-elite orthodoxy.
What is surprising is that the Republican establishment is so eager, it can’t wait to unveil its plans. In some ways, you can’t blame the Republican elites. They have been waiting a long time.