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GOP Gov. Rick Scott seeks Obamacare complaints, finds none

A group of seniors gave Gov. Rick Scott a history lesson on entitlements Tuesday, as the governor sought horror stories on Medicare cuts.
Rick Scott
Florida Gov. Rick Scott speaks during his State of the State speech on March 4, 2014 on Tallahassee.

A group of seniors gave Republican Gov. Rick Scott a history lesson on entitlements Tuesday, as the governor sought to warn the group about Obamacare and solicit their dissatisfaction.

“As I travel the state and I listen to seniors, they tell me stories about how their plans are being changed, how they are losing their doctors, the coverage is changing, and so what I’m here to do is just hear your stories,” Scott told the group of seniors assembled at a Florida senior center, the Volen Center.

Scott warned the group that one Medicare program—Medicare Advantage— had been cut. While a 1.9% cut to the program had been planed, the federal government reversed course on the decision and increased the program by 0.4%, though insurers still say the payments are less.

But instead of horror stories, Scott found a generally satisfied group.

“People were appalled at Social Security. They were appalled at Medicare when it came out. I think these major changes take some people aback. But I think we have to be careful not to just rely on the fact that we’re seniors and have an entitlement to certain things,” Ruthlyn Rubin, 66, told the governor, according to the Sun Sentinel, which recorded the meeting.

“I’m completely satisfied,” Harvey Eisen, 92, told Scott.

Eisen said he wasn’t sure about the cuts Scott warned of, but said he understood if there were cuts to Medicare.

“I can’t expect that me as a senior citizen are going to get preferential treatment when other programs are also being cut,” he said.

Rubin voiced similar understanding.

“We’re all just sitting here taking it for granted that because we have Medicare we don’t want to lose one part of it. That’s wrong to me. I think we have to spread it around. This is the United States of America. It’s not the United States of senior citizens,” Rubin said.

Scott dug further, asking if they’d seen any changes to their Medicare coverage or doctors they couldn’t see—the overwhelming response to both was no. Some voiced appreciation for Obamacare and the plan was generally popular, according to the Sun Sentinel.