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Public Statements

Issue Position: Seniors

Issue Position

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The Benefits You Earned - The Benefits You Deserve

The future of Social Security and Medicare depends on our ability to continue financing the programs without hurting those senior citizens that depend on their benefits. As a member of the Ways and Mean Committee, which oversees both Medicare and Social Security, I have been working to protect both of these vital programs.

Recently, I helped to write the health care reform bill to lower Medicare costs by giving seniors who are in the donut hole, a term that refers to the gap in prescription drug coverage, a $250 rebate. Moreover, the bill pledges to close the hole entirely by 2020 and extends the life of Medicare by 12 years.

I believe that a similar solution can be achieved with Social Security without cutting benefits. However one fact is clear- privatization is not the answer. Privatization means that your Social Security funds would be placed in the private market and would be subject to any changes in that market. During the recent economic downturn, this would have meant disaster for most senior citizens.

I have also advocated for community-based care through Medicaid, which would provide services that would permit seniors to maintain their independence and remain in the comfort of their own homes. Furthermore, I support giving seniors increased mobility and, as a member of the House Transportation Committee for 10 years, I have worked to give them increased access to transportation.

Finally, I have worked with my colleagues in Congress to pass the Recovery Act, which gave a $250 check to seniors last year, added $100 million to senior meals programs, and invested $120 million in community service jobs for seniors.

As a fellow senior citizen, I am committed to the causes that seniors are most worried about. I will continue to push for solutions which will help seniors including a cost-of-living adjustment increase next year and of course continued Social Security and Medicare benefits.


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