The biggest lie coming out of Washington this year was Democrats' assertion that "Republicans voted to end Medicare," PolitiFact says. Paul Ryan's proposal wouldn't have changed anything for people already 55 and older, and it would only have altered—not ended—Medicare for others, says the non-partisan fact-checking website. It points to "nine separate fact-checks" invalidating the Democrats' claim. Simply replacing "end Medicare" with "privatize Medicare" would have been a big improvement, the site suggests.
But PolitiFact acknowledges that a number of key voices—among them Talking Points Memo, the Daily Kos, and Paul Krugman—disagree. (The Huffington Post's headline was "Politi-Fail.") Indeed, the Washington Monthly calls PolitiFact's analysis "indefensible." "The House Republican budget plan intended to privatize the existing system and replace it with something very different—a voucher scheme," writes Steve Benen. "It would still be called 'Medicare,' but it wouldn’t be Medicare." (Click to read how Ryan has since altered his plan.)