|"Only dull people are brilliant at breakfast"
|"The liberal soul shall be made fat, and he that watereth, shall be watered also himself."
-- Proverbs 11:25
Tea party favorite Rand Paul has rocketed to the lead ahead of Tuesday’s Republican Senate primary here on a resolute pledge to balance the federal budget and slash the size of government.
But on Thursday evening, the ophthalmologist from Bowling Green said there was one thing he would not cut: Medicare physician payments.
In fact, Paul — who says 50% of his patients are on Medicare — wants to end cuts to physician payments under a program now in place called the sustained growth rate, or SGR. “Physicians should be allowed to make a comfortable living,” he told a gathering of neighbors in the back yard of Chris and Linda Wakild, just behind the 10th hole of a golf course.
Paul warns darkly of the U.S. becoming the next Greece. He promises to submit legislation on term limits, a balanced budget constitutional amendment, then a balanced budget as his first acts as a senator. And he’s not afraid of taking controversial stances to get to balance.
Last night, he said the retirement age will almost certainly have to be raised to be eligible for Social Security, and the Department of Education should be abolished. But on Medicare, cuts will hurt doctors, but “patients will pay a price, too,” he said in an interview, predicting physician shortages if they continue.
He also said he plans to continue practicing ophthalmology if elected.