Vice presidential hopeful Paul Ryan says his family relied on Medicare to take care of his grandmother, and his mother now counts on the program in retirement.

Ryan on Saturday told a mostly older audience in a large Florida retirement community that Republicans will protect those in or near retirement from Medicare cuts if Mitt Romney wins the White House.

Ryan pointed to his 78-year-old mother who joined him. He says he isn't going to hurt his mother's financial security and wouldn't hurt others, either. He says he saw first-hand Medicare's benefits as a child when his grandmother, with Alzheimer's, moved in with his family.

However, the 42-year-old congressman says the program needs to be overhauled during his generation so his children will be able to count on it, too.

Obama slams Romney, Ryan on Medicare

President Barack Obama sharply criticized rival Romney & Ryan on Medicare, saying the Republican challengers would alter the health care system for older Americans by making them pay more so wealthy taxpayers can get a tax break.

Obama made his remarks while in New Hampshire, a competitive state in the presidential contest. Romney and Ryan will campaign in the state Monday.


Since Ryan, the chief House Republican budget writer, joined the ticket, Medicare has taken prominence in the campaign.

Obama said Romney wants to give seniors a voucher to buy their own insurance and cited analyses that say older Americans could end up paying $6,400 more a year.


(Copyright 2012 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)