Commentary By Ron Beasley
Oregon is a progressive state and is well represented by Senator Jeff Merkley. Ron Wyden has been slowly moving to the right but his latest move is a knife in the back of all Democrats running in 2012.
WASHINGTON � In an unlikely partnership, Sen. Ron Wyden joined Rep. Paul Ryan on Wednesday in a plan for remodeling Medicare to ensure its long-term future.
The plan that Wyden, a Democrat from Oregon and Ryan, a Republican from Wisconsin, rolled out is a hybrid of earlier ideas, modified and repackaged in a way they hope will soften the partisan political turmoil.
Medicare serves more than 47 million Americans and is nearly sacred politically. At the same time, the ballooning costs projected for Medicare threaten both the popular program and the national economy.
The congressional debate over Medicare typically pits Democrats resisting change against Republicans complaining about costs. By wading into that debate together -- and doing it in an election year -- Wyden and Ryan hope to convince lawmakers from both parties to have what Wyden called "a different conversation."
The Democrats were planning to run against Paul Ryan's medicare plan in 2012. Wyden just made that much more difficult if not impossible. Ryan himself may have been vulnerable. This is the sort of thing you would expect from a blue dog Democrat from a conservative state not a Democrat from Oregon. Needless to say progressives and Democrats in the state are furious. Wyden was just reelected in 2010 I anticipate he will be a Republican by 2016.