Don’t Make Harmful Cuts to Social Security,
Medicare to Get Deal on Debt Ceiling: AARP
Organization launches campaign to preserve health
and retirement security of older Americans
AARP Television Commercial
May 6, 2011 - With the
national debate heating up on raising the debt ceiling, AARP announced a
new campaign Wednesday to fight against proposals with arbitrary limits,
caps or triggers that would result in harmful cuts to critical Social
Security and Medicare benefits that millions of Americans have earned
through a lifetime of hard work.
“American seniors have earned
their Medicare and Social Security benefits by working hard for decades.
But those benefits are at risk: Congress is considering harmful cuts to
both Medicare and Social Security as part of a deal to control America's
debt,” says the opening statement on the campaigns AARP
The AARP statement goes on the
explan: “Unless Congress raises the debt ceiling — increasing the
maximum amount of money the government can borrow — the government will
default on its debt and be unable to meet its financial obligations.
This would happen this summer.
“Members of Congress are
considering mandatory, arbitrary budget caps that could result in
detrimental cuts to Medicare and Social Security.
“Two proposals are getting a lot of attention in Congress: a cap on all
spending, including Medicare and Social Security, and a balanced budget
“Proposed cuts to Medicare and
Social Security would significantly reduce benefits to current and
“The limits that are part of
these proposals could trigger across-the-board cuts in Social Security
or Medicare, or both programs. Members of Congress from both parties are
considering these proposals, which could result in cuts to Medicare and
Social Security even if other spending is significantly reduced.
“AARP understands the urgent
need to reduce the deficit and control government spending, but we also
recognize that imposing arbitrary spending limits on Medicare and Social
Security could significantly reduce benefits to current and future
“The proposed limits on
Medicare could force seniors to pay higher insurance premiums and copays,
and threaten their choice of doctors and hospitals.
Imposing limits on Social
Security could lead to cuts that could deny seniors the money they count
on to pay for essentials such as groceries, utilities and prescription
“Cutting Social Security would
also break our nation's commitment to provide the benefits our seniors
have rightfully earned.
“Instead of making harmful
cuts to Social Security and Medicare, Congress should cut down on waste,
fraud and inefficiency throughout the health care system and target
other wasteful and inefficient spending, including spending through the
tax code in the form of loopholes and other unnecessary subsidies.
“AARP urges members and all
Americans to contact their representatives in Congress and tell them to
oppose arbitrary limits that could force dangerous cuts to Social
Security and Medicare.”
The campaign, which includes a
multi-million dollar national advertising schedule, grassroots and
online activities, will engage AARP members and the public around the
potential impact that such proposals could have on current and future
generations, and encourage them to contact their members of Congress to
oppose harmful cuts to Social Security and Medicare.
“Older Americans care deeply
about the nation’s fiscal health, but making political deals that cut
their hard earned benefits is the wrong way to address these
challenges,” said Nancy LeaMond, AARP Executive Vice President.
across-the-board spending cuts will not only reduce benefits for today’s
seniors and tomorrow’s retirees, but also add to the financial burden
that Americans are already shouldering for their health and financial
Beginning Wednesday, the
campaign will air a national television spot. The television ad script
“You’ve worked hard your
entire life. Paid your dues. Raised a family. You’ve earned a little
peace of mind. Now, some in Congress want to make harmful cuts to
Medicare and Social Security. Cutting your benefits so Washington can
pay its bills.
“AARP believes the country can
do better. We can cut wasteful spending without cutting the benefits
you’ve earned. Join us. Tell Congress to stop the harmful cuts to
Medicare and Social Security.”
LeaMond added, “AARP knows
that this discussion around the nation’s finances cannot be simply
reduced to a budget exercise—this is about real people. Congress must
balance addressing the nation’s long-term debt while preserving the
health and economic security that Social Security and Medicare provide
so that older Americans can pay their bills, see their doctors and not
worry about finding affordable health care.”
AARP describes itself as “a
nonprofit, nonpartisan organization with a membership that helps people
50+ have independence, choice and control in ways that are beneficial
and affordable to them and society as a whole. AARP does not endorse
candidates for public office or make contributions to either political
campaigns or candidates. We produce AARP The Magazine, the definitive
voice for 50+ Americans and the world's largest-circulation magazine
with nearly 35 million readers; AARP Bulletin, the go-to news source for
AARP's millions of members and Americans 50+; AARP VIVA, the only
bilingual U.S. publication dedicated exclusively to the 50+ Hispanic
community; and our website, AARP.org. AARP Foundation is an affiliated
charity that provides security, protection, and empowerment to older
persons in need with support from thousands of volunteers, donors, and
sponsors. We have staffed offices in all 50 states, the District of
Columbia, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands.”
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