Joe Donnelly

Trump pledged to protect Medicare. His choice for health secretary has other ideas

Trump pledged to protect Medicare. His choice for health secretary has other ideas

President-elect Donald Trump reassured voters during his insurgent political campaign that he would protect Medicare, Social Security and other popular federal assistance programs.

But in tapping Rep. Tom Price (R-Ga.) to be his Health and Human Services secretary, he has elevated one of the most aggressive proponents of dramatically overhauling the government safety net for seniors and low-income Americans, a long-held conservative goal.

Trump also took a step toward a potentially explosive political battle over the entitlements, which account for close to half of all federal spending.

Such a battle — and the threat of benefit cuts to more than...

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