Brady, however, remained vague about what exactly he wanted to do. While House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WI) has boldly doubled down on his own proposals for to privatize Medicare or what he calls "premium support," Brady was less clear about what he wanted to do.
"I envision 2017 as taking steps, small, in preparing for larger steps to save Medicare for the long term," Brady told the AP.
Past Ryan's plans over the years have shown a variety of options. The early ones showed Ryan phasing out traditional Medicare over time and moving to a health care market where every elderly person got a set amount of money to buy their health insurance. Health care advocates and Democrats worry that kind of system would force the burden of rising health care costs onto seniors. Ryan's later plans preserved traditional medicare as an option for people to buy with their vouchers, but experts are unclear if the proper protections would actually protect the integrity of the program. Either option would fundamentally change Medicare as it's currently structured.
Democrats are already vehemently rejecting anything resembling privatization and have said they plan to make the nomination of Rep. Tom Price (R-GA) to be HHS Secretary a referendum on his attempts to privatize Medicare.
It is still unclear what President-elect Trump thinks about privatization. He campaigned on a platform not to touch seniors' health care.