CBS News reports that the AARP’s dance with ObamaCare has produced real results for the senior advocacy group — really bad results. Over 60,000 members have left the AARP, angered by the group’s support for Barack Obama’s health-care reform efforts and silence on cuts to Medicare that will pay for them. Many have joined a new group with a more conservative outlook on health-care reform:
CBS News has learned that up to 60,000 people have cancelled their AARP memberships since July 1, angered over the group’s position on health care.
Elaine Guardiani has been with AARP for 14 years, and said, “I’m extremely disappointed in AARP.”
Retired nurse Dale Anderson has 12 years with AARP and said, “I don’t wanna be connected with AARP.”
Many are switching to the American Seniors Association, a group that calls itself the conservative alternative as CBS News Investigative Correspondent Sharyl Attkisson reports.
The big problem is the cuts to Medicare and the attacks on Medicare Advantage. The American Seniors Association minces no words in its opposition to ObamaCare and the cuts to the two plans. They don’t need to see the final bill, as the AARP spokeswoman suggests in the interview, to know it’s a bad deal.
Seniors can be forgiven if they sense a heapin’ helping of hypocrisy from the AARP. The organization bitterly opposed efforts to reform Social Security four years ago, claiming that the Bush administration’s privatization plans amounted to a “dismantling” of the retirement plan, even before they’d actually seen the proposal. Now, when Obama offers big cuts in actual coverage in Medicare and Medicare Advantage, suddenly they want to play coy about reading the bill. Their lack of response is easily taken as tacit endorsement, considering the hysterical response four years ago.
Glenn Reynolds doubts that this will get as much attention as the boycott of Glenn Beck. I’m surprised to see CBS covering the story, and doing it this well. Kudos to CBS for a balanced and informative piece.