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66 County Road Trip Nears the End

Message from State President Dennis Eisnach

Since late April, AARP South Dakota has been reaching out to SD citizens to get their opinions about Medicare and Social Security through “You’ve Earned a Say.” Staff and volunteers have been traveling to all 66 counties in SD, holding listening sessions to find out what you, your family, your friends, and your neighbors across the state are thinking about thinking about the future of these two important programs. I’ve had the pleasure to join the staff on several of their stops, and I have to say this is a massive and impressive undertaking.

See Also: You’ve Earned a Say: 66 County Road Trip

These meeting have attracted not only AARP members but anyone interested in offering their concerns, opinions and ideas for protecting and strengthening Medicare and Social Security for current and future generations. Groups have been large and small, and the discussions have been tremendous.

We’ve been hearing over and over how important Medicare and Social security are to the health and retirement security of South Dakota. We’re hearing that folks feel these are earned benefits, not “entitlements”, and that it is important for these programs to continue, not only for themselves, but for their children and grandchildren. We’re also hearing that people are frustrated with the partisanship in Washington.

During a recent visit to Capitol Hill to visit our SD delegation, State Director Sarah Jennings and I were able to share these concerns with Senators John Thune, Tim Johnson and Representative Christi Noem about our 66 county tour.

All three are interested in receiving the information that we gather from our SD residents. In this way AARP is able to collectively make your voice heard and hopefully have an impact on the decision making process in our Congress.

If you haven’t been able to join us at one of our You’ve Earned a Say Community Conversations in your county, I encourage you to find us at the State Fair Aug., 30, and watch our website for upcoming details on another round of regional conversations happening this fall. Or, have your say right now at

You can fill out questionnaires to weigh in the future of Medicare and Social Security, you can even try our online tools and see if you have what it takes to protect and strengthen Medicare and Social.

If you’d like to see all the places we’ve been this summer, follow our online travel diary.

Click the pins or camera icons to see photos of our travels across the state or watch videos and hear what your friends and neighbors across South Dakota are saying.

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