AARP Endorses Republicans' Medicare Bill

CADsortaGUY

Lifer
Oct 19, 2001
25,162
1
76
www.ShawCAD.com
In the culmination of a long courtship, Republicans won the AARP's support for Medicare prescription drug legislation on Monday, and the nation's most prominent seniors organization said it would spend $7 million or more in a huge barrage of television advertising to back the plan.
**cliff notes at bottom:p**
<snips>
The bill is not perfect, AARP chief executive William D. Novelli told the Associated Press in an interview, ading, "But the country can't afford to wait for perfect."
...
Rother said the AARP was prepared to spend more if Congress has not voted before Friday.
Democrats voiced their displeasure.
...
Senate Democratic leader Tom Daschle of South Dakota said, "When seniors see the details of the Republican plan, the AARP leadership will undoubtedly regret this ill-advised decision." House Democratic leader Nancy Pelosi of California said, "AARP's national leadership has been co-opted by Republicans pushing a partisan bill that fails to provide a real prescription drug benefit under Medicare."
...
These Republican officials said Novelli made three demands: more money to entice employers to maintain health benefits for their retirees; a temporary, limited program of competition between traditional Medicare and private insurance plans, and the removal of a Senate provision that AARP said would allow employers to eliminate all health benefits for retirees eligible for Medicare or state health plans.
The compromise negotiators and congressional leaders reached Saturday satisfied AARP on all three.
While Republicans have been solicitous, Democrats fumed about a group that has been on their side of many battles.
...
Still, the former public relations executive is keenly aware of his group's clout and aims to use it. "We have to agree to disagree" with the Democrats," Novelli said.
...
Ron Pollack, the president of the health care advocacy group Families USA, said Novelli has made it plain that he "wanted to make sure that AARP functioned on a truly bipartisan basis."

In response to Daschle's tart prediction that he would face a revolt within his organization over this bill, Novelli said, "There's not going to be a revolt within AARP. There's going to be a problem if Congress fails to pass this legislation."
<snips>

Ouch...that last one's going to leave a mark:p How many times is Daschle going to open the door into his continuously bloody nose.:p

OK, now all Daschle bashing aside - I think this stinks. I don't think there shoule be a bill - PERIOD. I'm not siding with the Democrats who don't like this bill, because they just don't like it because they couldn't/wouldn't pass it for the people they supposedly champion and they are just pissed because the Republicans are actually doing something that has earned them praise from the AARP.
Now like I said though - THIS and ANY Prescription drug ENTITLEMENT stinks. This entitlement will force alot of Seniors off of their current plans(from retirements and such) because companies will now be able to drop them since the gov't will cover them all anyway...but at an increased cost to the Senior. Now I don't want to hear about this "helping" Corporations, because ANY plan(even the Dem plan) will end up causing alot of Seniors to pay more for coverage. IMO the gov't should stay the heck out of these things - and concentrate on the truely poor, instead of giving Old people a bunch of "free" stuff to pander and buy votes. If this passes and when Bush is re-elected I expect to see tremendous changes to SS, Medicare, and etc to lessen the hit we are all going to take from this sort of ENTITLEMENTS.
/mini unorganized rant

Now back to the fun stuff:p Boy won't it be interesting to see how this affects Daschle, 'Ol Swimmer, and the rest of the ones who are speaking out against this. Isn't Daschle up for re-election in '04? Should be interesting to see how he votes on this;)
list of Senators up for re-election in '04

Should be interesting to see which of them vote for this plan that plays "roulette with the lives of senior citizens,"(-'Ol Swimmer) and which ones cave to stay in the AARP's good graces.

In short - I'm enjoying the political setup, but I very much dislike what it means either way. I almost hope the Democrats muster enough support to vote this down but I'm sure it'll end up happening someday and so I'd rather see this plan enacted, which has "some" privatization, instead of a full fledged entitlement like the Dems want.

**Cliffnotes**
-Dems don't want this drug plan
-AARP does
-Repubs got AARP support for plan
-Daschle slams door in face :p;)

CkG
 

glenn1

Lifer
Sep 6, 2000
25,383
1,013
126
If the Republican medicare bill is what it takes to buy off the old farts so they'll go the f*ck away and stay away, then i'm all for it.
 

Tripleshot

Elite Member
Jan 29, 2000
7,218
1
0
Who the hell endorses AARP? No one I know. That organization does nothing for older people but seperate them from their money, much like the republicans do.
 

BaliBabyDoc

Lifer
Jan 20, 2001
10,737
0
0
AARP leadership is being quite myopic. Private insurance providers (in the six metro test markets) will behave like all previous private participants in Medicare/Medicare competition. They will select healthy old folks while leaving chronic renal, cancer, and stroke to Medicare . . . not to mention the fact they are GUARANTEED to make money . . . so even if they slip up and select a couple of sick people the government will use Medicare funds to cover the expense. In the post-hoc analysis, some twit at AEI or Heritage will claim the competitive model is clearly superior and Medicare should be dumped.

On the flip side, this plan does nothing to constrain healthcare inflation particularly drug costs. The prescription card being touted by the Bushies is just another handout to Big Pharma. In the same manner that drug companies write off the expense of physician samples against profits as a marketing expense (justifiable of course) . . . Big Pharma will write off the expense of discounting medications. Discount programs cannot be dismissed out of hand b/c it's certainly possible that 10-15-20% discounts might actually support improved access to necessary pharmacotherapy. But the net cost of providing medications to our society will continue to rise.

The research that is required to determine which medications provide the best bang4buck is government funded (NIH) but as budget deficits climb . . . research dollars will invariably shrink.

In sum, the $400B (without any attempt to improve utilization) essentially provides more profit to Big Pharma. The pilot program into a competitive model is fatally-flawed. Granted, the absence of serious exploration into Medicare reform is a horrible oversight BUT this legislation does NOT do it.
 

CADsortaGUY

Lifer
Oct 19, 2001
25,162
1
76
www.ShawCAD.com
Originally posted by: BaliBabyDoc
In sum, the $400B (without any attempt to improve utilization) essentially provides more profit to Big Pharma. The pilot program into a competitive model is fatally-flawed. Granted, the absence of serious exploration into Medicare reform is a horrible oversight BUT this legislation does NOT do it.
Neither plan has "serious exploration into Medicare reform" and both will be a boon for Big Pharma since they can now use the gov't to suckle from. This entitlement shouldn't even be contemplated until our whole Entitlement system is revamped to perform better and cut out the bloat.

Wishful thinking, I know:(, but hopefully someday people will realize that the gov't can't provide everything for everyone.

BTW Tripleshot - AARP is quite a powerful organization and delivers voters...just like Unions do;)

CkG
 

Lucky

Lifer
Nov 26, 2000
13,126
1
0
Originally posted by: Tripleshot
Who the hell endorses AARP? No one I know. That organization does nothing for older people but seperate them from their money, much like the democrats do.
 

Dragnov

Diamond Member
Apr 24, 2001
6,878
0
0
AARP is one of the top 5 most powerful interest groups/unions in Washington.

Going against them and old people (who are politically active and vote) is suicide.
 

Mrburns2007

Platinum Member
Jun 14, 2001
2,595
0
0
Yeah more profits for the Drug Companies...I was getting worried I wasn't paying enough taxes so those CEO's could buy bigger houses and new yaht's.
 

AnyMal

Lifer
Nov 21, 2001
15,780
0
76
Originally posted by: Tripleshot
Who the hell endorses AARP? No one I know. That organization does nothing for older people but seperate them from their money, much like the republicans do.
Oh yeah, and Democrats are all for people keeping their money
rrrrriiiiiiiiight......
 

SuperTool

Lifer
Jan 25, 2000
14,000
2
0
Who comes up with this nonsense? It's something like 75% upto $2000, then 0% from 2000 to 4000 and 95% from 4000 to infinity?
Whose idea is this discontinuity and what's the rationale for it?
 

Zebo

Elite Member
Jul 29, 2001
39,398
19
81
don't mess with aarp. A bunch of people with way too much time on thier hands to bitch and bitch who will vote unlike the dumbass working stiff. I can't fiqure out why the'd be happy with those exclusion amounts though. 3,000 is easy to get to. And a $250 deductable?
 

PainTrain

Member
Jun 22, 2003
170
2
0
Originally posted by: CADkindaGUY
Originally posted by: BaliBabyDoc
In sum, the $400B (without any attempt to improve utilization) essentially provides more profit to Big Pharma. The pilot program into a competitive model is fatally-flawed. Granted, the absence of serious exploration into Medicare reform is a horrible oversight BUT this legislation does NOT do it.
Neither plan has "serious exploration into Medicare reform" and both will be a boon for Big Pharma since they can now use the gov't to suckle from. This entitlement shouldn't even be contemplated until our whole Entitlement system is revamped to perform better and cut out the bloat.

Wishful thinking, I know:(, but hopefully someday people will realize that the gov't can't provide everything for everyone.

BTW Tripleshot - AARP is quite a powerful organization and delivers voters...just like Unions do;)

CkG
Pretty good post CAD, although I would specualte, from an ideological standpoint, that instead of the government being limited in their ability to protect the elderly (AKA Americans) from Corporate interests it is exactly their duty as representatives of the people to do so. What is so costly to the taxpayers about controling the spiriling costs of pharmaceuticals? Nothing. Who stands to gain from it? The American people. Who stands to lose from it? Big Pharma. And whose career's would that compromise? Just about anyone on capitol hill. There's something seriosuly flawed with our government right now, and more than ever is it being accentuated.

 

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