In the official Republican response to Obama's speech, Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) repeated his party's charge that the president's plans have backfired and will continue to backfire because they assume that big government can solve every problem, including the health care crisis.
The Affordable Care Act (ACA), also known as Obamacare, Rubio claimed, is one exercise in backfiring. He said the ACA is causing some Americans to lose the health insurance coverage they are happy with, while the law's "expensive requirements" are causing some companies not only to freeze hiring, but also to force full-time employees into part-time status.
Obama's statements about Medicare notwithstanding, the Florida senator asked when the president will offer a plan to save the program. "Tonight would have been a good time for him to do it," he said, adding that his party has already produced a detailed prescription for Medicare reform.
"I would never support any changes to Medicare that would hurt seniors," Rubio said. "But anyone who is in favor of leaving Medicare exactly the way it is right now is in favor of bankrupting it."