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Senior Citizens and Healthcare

Why Seniors Should Care About Getting Money Out of Politics

Social Security
Since it was established in 1935, Social Security has been the single most important factor in reducing the poverty rate among senior citizens; 42% of seniors depend on it to stay above the poverty line. Groups such as stock brokers and investment firms gave over $43 million dollars in 2000 to congressional candidates, almost 60% more than 1998! These groups would benefit heavily from the privatization of Social Security and risky maneuvering of Social Security funds, a proposal considered by Congress.

Prescription Drug Prices
The healthcare industry spends more money than anyone else to sway our politicians. Pharmaceutical manufacturers spent $20 million dollars while the entire healthcare industry spent over $91 million dollars in the year 2000, up a staggering 48% from 1998 healthcare industry contributions. These investments have paid off: "In 1998, wholesale prices for 50 prescriptions commonly filled by the elderly rose by 6.6 percent even though the inflation rate was 1.6 percent." Raleigh News & Observer, 11/04/99.

Managed Care
In July 1998, Congress narrowly rejected the "Patients' Bill of Rights," a bill designed to expand protections for patients in HMOs and to limit abuses by insurance companies. The companies against the "Patients' Bill of Rights" contributed $10.6 million in PAC money to congressional candidates between 1995-1998. Did these contributions defeat your rights as a patient?


From Public Campaign's "Why America's Seniors Should Care about Money in Politics."

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[DemSouth logo]Democracy South : Improving Democracy : Senior Citizens & Healthcare
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