GOP Lawmakers Dispute Obama Health Reform Sales Pitch

ABC News' Z. Byron Wolf reports: As President Obama hopped (just barely) outside the Beltway to suburban Maryland to kick off his campaign to sell the health reform law to seniors, Republicans back on Capitol Hill took the opportunity to re-litigate the issue, too.

“The American people don't understand how the administration spent more than a year talking about health care could end up with a bill that that raises the price of health care instead of lowering it,” said Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., on the Senate floor.

Speaking in a town-hall setting, the president touted the law for closing, over the next few years, the so-called "donut hole" between when Medicare patients receiving their prescription drug insurance from the government max out coverage and when they reach their own max payments and government coverage kicks back in. This year, seniors who enter the donut hole will get a $250 payment to help get them through to when government benefits kick back in.

But McConnell argued that other seniors who receive their prescription drug coverage from the government through Medicare will see higher costs.

“What the administration, however, won't mention in today's event is that for every senior who gets a check, more than three other seniors will see an increase in their prescription drug insurance premiums,” said McConnell.

What’s McConnell’s proof?

“The reason for this is that the health care bill democrats forced on Americans earlier this year requires higher government mandated minimum standards for everyone. so those who opted for anything below that minimum will now see their premiums go up. and the number of seniors in this category far, far outnumbers those getting a check,” said McConnell, who accused the White House of “hiding the whole truth.”

Supporters of the bill point to CBO projections that many people offered better insurance coverage would opt to pay for it.

- Z. Byron Wolf

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