My response to AARP:
Thanks for nothing Barry,
All during this debate AARP has supported the legislation making its way through Washington, despite numerous denials to the contrary. When I logon to the AARP site, the only opportunity I have to express my opinion is by clicking on a button YOU provide that is in support of this disastrous legislation. If AARP really represented us, you would have had the decency to at least put up the appearance of wanting our real reaction to legislation. The hard work of your staff in analyzing the legislation has amounted to nothing more than propaganda in favor of the legislation. Instead you chose to side with the spending large amounts of our tax dollars on a program that has as one of its goals the reduction of Medicare and Medicaid payments, driving those who depend on those payments into a government system that will ration healthcare to the detriment of all. Furthermore, as a retired person, why should I be asked to fund elective abortions and health care to illegal (sorry, undocumented) aliens? Today, you have betrayed us by taking a stand that hurts seniors and avoids the opportunity to make focused changes to our healthcare system that would be less costly, create less bureaucracy in Washington, and leave the responsibility for healthcare options to the patient, not the government. Shame on you and all your supporters for such short-sighted, self-serving grandstanding.
Here's the text of the email for anyone with a stomach strong enough to read it. Notice how many times they provide a one-click button to tell someone you approve, but never provide a button to oppose. This has been the case on their website ever since the debate began.
The House votes this week on a final health reform bill!
The bill contains a number of critical components that AARP fought hard for to ensure it improves the health of our members and their families.
Click here to ask your representative to support the bill.
Over the last several months, AARP has fought hard for crucial components of health reform that will improve the health and lives of our members and their families.
The House of Representatives will vote on a final bill this week that includes key priorities for older Americans.
That's why we've chosen to support the legislation about to be voted on by the House – the Affordable Health Care for America Act. We believe it protects and strengthens Medicare, and ensures that your care will never take a back seat to insurance companies' profits.
Click here to tell Rep. McNerney to vote for health reform – and help us move this legislation one big step closer to becoming a reality.
I’ll be the first to admit that the bill isn't perfect. But there are so many provisions that would make our broken system work better for older Americans, critical components that AARP fought hard for, such as:
• Ensuring seniors' access to doctors so they can see the doctor of their choice or find a doctor if they need one;
• Preventing insurance companies from denying affordable coverage to anyone because of their health or their age;
• Saving seniors from having to pay thousands in out-of-pocket costs for their prescription drugs by closing the Medicare Part D coverage gap, or "doughnut hole"; and
• Ensuring that people who already have coverage through their employers, including retirees, don’t lose that coverage.
We know that critics and special interests will try to derail this legislation. They will probably even attack AARP for supporting this bill. From my perspective, I couldn't be prouder of the work I see AARP staff putting in to analyze legislation, advocate on your behalf, and constantly evaluate ways to help improve the health of older Americans.
But this isn't and shouldn't be about us. This moment is about reform that improves the health and lives of our members and their families. And, in the end, it won't be the words of the television talking heads or the newspapers – or even AARP – that will ring in your member of Congress' head when it's time to vote tomorrow. It will be YOURS.
Tell Rep. McNerney to support reform and cast a vote to pass this crucial bill.
As we near the final, most difficult stages of this process, thanks in advance for all your help to ensure that Congress passes reform that works for older Americans.
AARP Online Advocacy Manager