AARP is out with a new TV ad attacking Congressional Democrats and Republicans for considering policies that would extend the solvency of the Medicare program and reduce our nation’s staggering debt. In the ad AARP absurdly suggests the nation’s trillion dollar deficit and nearly $15 trillion debt can be solved by miniscule cuts to earmarks. This is hard to reconcile with AARP’s strong support last year of one-half trillion dollars in Medicare cuts in the Democrats’ health care overhaul, which Medicare and Obama Administration officials warn could jeopardize seniors’ access to health care. It just so happened that the bulk of these cuts will likely result in AARP growing their profits by more than $1 billion over the next 10 years.
So, to AARP, reducing Medicare spending is only acceptable when AARP benefits financially, regardless of how it impacts America’s seniors.
In a letter to Senators in 2009, AARP justified the more than one-half trillion dollars in Medicare cuts included in the Democrats’ health care overhaul:
“…AARP believes that savings can be found in Medicare through smart, targeted changes aimed at improving health care delivery, eliminating waste and inefficiency, and aggressively weeding out fraud and abuse. Such changes will help strengthen Medicare’s long-term financing…”
AARP CEO, Barry Rand, December 2009
In a recent email referencing discussions in Vice President Joe Biden’s debt working group to reduce Medicare spending:
“We must hold Congress accountable and demand that they…not cut the benefits millions of Americans rely on to make ends meet.”
AARP Advocacy e-mail, June 2011