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Republican Presidential Candidates Talk With AARP About Medicare

Four hopefuls weigh in on a key 2012 campaign issue

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Last year more than 47 million Americans — more than 83 percent of them aged 65 and older and the rest disabled — received a total of $516 billion in health insurance benefits under the Medicare program, which is financed by payroll taxes. Before Medicare was enacted in 1965, only 51 percent of people 65 and older had health care coverage; today, they're the only age group with virtually universal coverage.
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