AARP Calls on President to Consider Impact of Budget Proposals on Real People

Washington–(ENEWSPF)–December 3, 2010.  While today’s report from the President’s Fiscal Commission has failed to garner the needed votes to move the package directly to Congress, AARP recognizes that the deficit remains a problem. The organization calls on President Obama to assess the impact on real people of any of the report’s recommendations he may consider. AARP continues to be concerned that the proposal put forward by the President’s Commission, if enacted, would further erode the health and financial security of middle class Americans.

The following statement is from AARP CEO Addison Barry Rand:

“Older Americans care about putting our nation’s fiscal house in order, and we recognize the difficult task that the President’s Fiscal Commission faced in recommending ways to reduce the deficit. AARP is disappointed, however, that the report reflected an unbalanced approach—including a combination of reducing Social Security benefits and increasing Medicare out of pocket costs—that would hit middle class Americans deeply, and take our nation in the wrong direction.

“We believe that we can tackle our budgetary challenges with smart fiscal policy that should strengthen the security of middle class families, not undermine it.

“The unbalanced deficit reduction proposals from the Fiscal Commission would shift too many costs onto individuals, reduce Social Security benefits, and undermine people’s ability to plan for their future long-term care needs. For example, the Commission report could raise Medicare beneficiaries’ out of pocket costs by as much as $7,500, especially penalizing the sick. The unstable payment system that is driving doctors out of Medicare would be continued, and families would have fewer options to save for long-term care to remain independent as long as possible.

“In addition, AARP is very concerned with proposals that would significantly reduce Social Security benefits, especially for millions of future middle class retirees. With disappearing pensions, dwindling retirement savings and declining home values and job prospects, the retirement security gap will only grow larger.

“Our members are very concerned about the retirement prospects for their children and grandchildren, and believe that lowering Social Security income and increasing health and long-term care costs are the wrong approach, one that would lower the standard of living in retirement for future generations. AARP calls on the President to create a budgetary framework that would help us achieve, not sacrifice, the health and financial security needs of Americans.”

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