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AARP Thanks Congress for Keeping Medicare Fair, Overriding White House Veto

Wednesday, July 16, 2008 General News J E 4
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CHICAGO, July 15 ATTENTION NEWS DESKS: AARP isrecording House and Senate roll call votes on key issues throughout the 110thCongress, and informing its nearly 40 million members of the results of thesekey votes.

** How a legislator votes on issues is only one factor in evaluating hisor her legislative performance, which should also include such things asconstituency services and committee work.

"Today's vote is a victory for the 44 million Americans who depend onMedicare, and we applaud the Illinois Congressional Delegation for theircontinued support," said Bob Gallo, AARP Illinois State Director. "Thisbipartisan legislation will help more Americans afford their health care billswhile bringing doctors' offices and pharmacies into the 21st century withe-prescribing. This bill would begin to bring down health care costs formillions of Americans, while reducing dangerous drug interactions withelectronic prescriptions."

AARP has been advocating for several months to ensure that lawmakers keepMedicare fair for the people who depend on it when Congress addressesphysician payment cuts. AARP has also been advocating for this bill'simprovements to Medicare, particularly the low-income programs and electronicprescribing.

Since launching the "Keep Medicare Fair" initiative in April, AARP'sgrassroots volunteers and activists have sent more than 1.2 million messagesto Congress and the White House. As part of this effort, an AARP surveyreleased May 19 found that of adults 50-plus, 81 percent oppose additionalincreases to Medicare premiums and 66 percent are less likely to vote for aMember of Congress who supports those increases.

AARP notified the 110th Congress that it was tracking roll call votes onkey legislation important to its 39 million members and reporting the outcomesof these votes back to its members.

"We believe people make the right choices when they understand the issuesand positions taken by their elected officials. AARP intends to ensure thatits members get that information," Gallo concluded.

AARP is a nonprofit, nonpartisan membership organization that helps people50+ have independence, choice and control in ways that are beneficial andaffordable to them and society as a whole. AARP does not endorse candidatesfor public office or make contributions to either political campaigns orcandidates. We produce AARP The Magazine, the definitive voice for 50+Americans and the world's largest-circulation magazine with over 33 millionreaders; AARP Bulletin, the go-to news source for AARP's 39 million membersand Americans 50+; AARP Segunda Juventud, the only bilingual U.S. publicationdedicated exclusively to the 50+ Hispanic community; and our website,AARP.org. AARP Foundation is an affiliated charity that provides security,protection, and empowerment to older persons in need with support fromthousands of volunteers, donors, and sponsors. We have staffed offices in all50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands.SUMMARY: Today the U.S. House of Representatives and Senate votedoverwhelmingly to override a White House veto and pass important Medicarelegislation. The Medicare Improvements for Patients and Providers Act willimprove Medicare's low-income programs, boost health care quality with asystem of national e-prescribing, and help ensure the access of patients totheir doctors. ILLINOIS HOUSE VOTED YES TO PASS VOTED NO ON MEDICARE BILL MEDICARE BILL Rush, Bobby D-1 Not voting Jackson, Jesse D-2 Yes Lipinski, Dan D-3 Yes Gutierrez, Luis D-4 Yes Emanuel, Rahm D-5 Yes Roskam, Peter R-6 Yes Davis, Danny D-7 Not voting Bean, Melissa D-8 Yes Schakowsky, Janice D-9 Yes Kirk, Mark R-10 Yes Weller, Gerald R-11
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