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Public Statements

Issue Position: Supporting Seniors

Issue Position

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Martha is committed to fighting for the needs of senior citizens.

As United States Senator, Martha will work to ensure that Americans who have spent their lives building their financial futures will not be denied housing, health care, or the ability to thrive in their later years.

Saving Social Security

Martha understands that during this financial crisis, when countless numbers of our family members, neighbors, colleagues, and friends have seen their retirement savings disappear, the safety net of Social Security is more important than ever.

Martha knows that now is not the time to cut benefits. The Congressional Budget Office has estimated that next year, for the first time since 1975, beneficiaries will not get a cost of living adjustment. Martha supports emergency measures to ensure that beneficiaries receive a cost of living adjustment increase, ensuring that Social Security's promises are kept.

As Senator, Martha will fight to keep the promise of Social Security and preserve it for future generations. She is committed to ensuring that benefits are not reduced, and that those paying into the system now will be guaranteed their benefits later.


Understanding the Health Care Needs of Seniors -- Medicaid and Medicare

Martha's heath care reform goals of expanding coverage, improving quality, and reducing costs are essential for seniors and those caring for them.

As Attorney General, Martha demonstrated her commitment to seniors by creating a means for them to navigate the Massachusetts health care law through her office's Seniors Helpline and promoting enforcement actions against deceptive health care providers.

As Attorney General, Martha also brought enforcement actions against drug companies that artificially drove up costs. Because Medicaid is a joint state and federal program, Martha's actions saved Massachusetts taxpayers millions of dollars and helped to make sure that those who rely on Medicaid for their prescription drugs can continue to do so.

As Senator, Martha will work to ensure that any health care reform package preserves and strengthens Medicare, gives seniors improved quality and access to care, and provides prescription drugs at lower prices.

Martha will fight for seniors who want to stay in their homes, by advocating for tax benefits for those providing care to elders, and supporting health care reform measures that provide home and community based services.

Promoting Elder Safety

Martha believes that protecting our seniors must be a priority. As Attorney General, Martha has been a champion for the safety and financial security of senior citizens. She will carry this deep commitment with her to the United States Senate.

As Attorney General, Martha targeted enforcement actions against long term care facilities, and as Senator, she will support legislation to strengthen oversight of the long term care workforce. Martha has also fought to ensure the safety of prescription drugs. In 2008, the Attorney General's Office filed a brief to urge the Supreme Court to allow states to protect consumers harmed by drug manufactures that fail to disclose side effects and risks.

As Senator, Martha will continue to fight for drug safety and regulation of the pharmaceutical industry.

Preventing Scams Aimed at Seniors

The economic crisis has forced some seniors out of their homes, and still others are preyed upon by fraudulent loan officers. Martha is committed to protecting seniors from predatory lending and telephone fraud scams.

As Attorney General, Martha vigilantly prosecuted financial fraud criminals and worked to help seniors protect themselves. She also testified before Congress in support of legislation that would combat foreclosure relief scams. In 2007, Martha implemented emergency regulations governing mortgage brokers and mortgage lenders.

As Senator, Martha will continue to fight for further regulation of the financial industry to protect homebuyers. She will support legislation to protect seniors by further regulating investment advisors and targeting criminals who commit fraud, such as selling unsuitable products to seniors, and failing to disclose a product's risks and fees. And she will support increasing penalties for those who specifically target seniors.

Fighting for Lower Energy and Health Care Costs

Martha understands that seniors, particularly those living on a fixed income, are often forced to make difficult choices between heating their homes or buying medication -- and paying their living expenses.

As Attorney General, Martha worked with municipalities and other community agencies to ensure the safety and well-being of seniors in need of assistance. She took on the utility companies and helped lower utility rates, held emergency roundtables to address rising home heating costs when they posed a public health emergency, and advocated for expanding the Low Income Heating and Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) to ensure that low income families and seniors could remain safely in their homes.

Skyrocketing health care costs have had a disproportionate impact on seniors. As Attorney General, Martha took on the pharmaceutical companies and health insurers that drive up health care costs. She recovered record settlements and protected consumers from deceptive marketing.

In Washington, Martha will support health reform measures that help seniors, such as restricting insurance companies' ability to indiscriminately increase rates based on age and ensuring that businesses keep their promises to provide health insurance to retirees. Martha will fight for a comprehensive plan that strengthens Medicare, expands coverage for all aging Americans, lower prescription drug costs and improves the quality of elder care.

Read More

* AARP Interview with Attorney General Coakley

* Attorney General Martha Coakley Testifies Before Congress on Predatory Lending Impact on Massachusetts

* Attorney General Martha Coakley's Office to Hold Winter Heating Roundtable in Salem

* Attorney General Martha Coakley tells senior citizens how to avoid scams

* Attorney General Martha Coakley's Office Releases Winter Heating and Energy Report

* Attorney General Martha Coakley's Office Reaches $1.8 Million Settlement with Drug Manufacturer

* Attorney General Martha Coakley Joins Vermont and 45 Other States in Asking U.S. Supreme Court to Uphold Vermont Supreme Court Decision Protecting Pharmaceutical Consumers

* Dorchester Mortgage Officer Pleads Guilty, Incarcerated for Two Years in Connection with Fraudulently Obtaining Subprime Mortgages for Unqualified Buyers

* Testimony of Massachusetts AG Martha Coakley: Committee on Financial Services Subcommittee on Housing and Community Opportunity


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