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AARP Statement on Preserving Social Security and Medicare

For Immediate Release

September 3, 2010

Contact: AARP Media Relations, 202-434-2560,

AARP Statement on Preserving Social Security and Medicare

AARP Director of Media Relations Jim Dau offered the following statement in response to a CNBC opinion piece on Social Security and Medicare:

"A recent blog post on this site is right about one thing—Americans of all ages should be concerned that the President's fiscal commission could make harmful cuts to Social Security in the name of reducing a deficit it didn't cause.  Most everything else in the post, however, consists of the same type of partisan misinformation that has made it more difficult to strengthen our nation’s two most critical retirement programs – Social Security and Medicare – for current and future generations.

“On Medicare, the post wheels out the same old tired rhetoric that those opposed to health care reform have used for years.  The author may not appreciate that the health care law closes the Medicare prescription drug coverage gap and creates new preventive benefits for 47 million older Americans, as well as cuts wasteful and fraudulent spending in the program to strengthen its financial health.  We'd encourage him to talk with the doctors, hospitals, nurses and other providers who endorsed the changes which they believe will increase the quality of and access to care while actually saving money for people and Medicare itself.

"But back to the matter at hand—protecting Social Security.  Contrary to the author's attack that we are a 'mouthpiece' of the current Administration or anyone else, AARP has been leading the fight to prevent the President's fiscal commission from making cuts to Social Security in the name of deficit reduction.  Once the commission made it clear that Social Security was on the table for deficit reduction we have been engaging our members and all Americans across the country.  In fact, since late July we’ve conducted or participated in nearly 200 events reaching over 2 million people, and we’ve generated nearly 2 million petitions opposing the use of cuts to Social Security for deficit reduction.  While we disagree with the author's support for carving-out costly and risky private accounts from Social Security, we appreciate his apparent conversion on protecting the program from unfair benefit cuts, and would be grateful for his continued help on that front."

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AARP is a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization 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 over 35.1 million readers; AARP Bulletin, the go-to news source for AARP's millions of members and Americans 50+; AARP VIVA su Segunda Juventud, the only bilingual U.S. publication dedicated exclusively to the 50+ Hispanic community; and our website, 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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