December 3 2009, 4:47 PM
Political talk about the new surge of troops in Afghanistan may be dominating headlines these days, but the U.S. Senate is still fighting over health-care legislation. And Colorado Democrat Michael Bennet (left) has found himself at the center of the latest battle, which involves claims by Arizona Republican John McCain that Medicare will be pillaged if reforms go through as they are written now. If you answer your phone in Colorado, Arkansas, Nebraska, or North Dakota, you might hear a pre-recorded message from McCain, meant to rile support for his effort to remove language that could cut funds from Medicare to pay for reform, according to The National Journal. Those states are considered moderate, and McCain's robocalls are meant to strike a political chord with older voters as the 2010 election approaches. But Democrats seem to have thwarted McCain's effort by voicing support for a new Bennet amendment that aims to protect Medicare guarantees, writes Talk Radio News Service. "[Bennet's] proposal makes it absolutely clear that the savings that this bill achieves through greater efficiency in Medicare are used for the benefit of the seniors that Medicare serves," says Senator Tom Harkin, an Iowa Democrat. "That's the issue here and no amount of scare tactics can disguise it." Meanwhile, prolonged discussion on McCain's amendment and one other have Democrats considering whether to cut off debate on amendments after three days of discussion, reports Dow Jones Newswires.