Tuesday :: Nov 18, 2003

The AARP's New GOP "Friends"


by Steve

In case you are a little bewildered at how the AARP can do an about-face yesterday and not only support the Medicare drug benefit and “reform” bill pushed by the GOP, but also spend $7 million of members’ funds to sell it, perhaps you can consider this. First, keep in mind that AARP makes money off referrals to insurance companies and policies, and requiring the introduction of managed care plans into Medicare for the drug benefit was a key part of the GOP “reforms.” Also, the GOP connection to Mr. Novelli, as this BuzzFlash analysis today points out, includes a direct tie to Newt Gingrich of all people.

Plus the Center for Budget and Policy Priorities came out today with analyses that show the "reforms" will actually raise costs for many seniors and actually reduce their access to drugs they get now through state Medicaid programs. Let's see how Mr. Novelli explains that one to his membership.

And what did the AARP get from the GOP Senate for its support today? Why, the introduction of a bill by Lindsay Graham to privatize Social Security, that’s what. I hope Mr. Novelli is feeling comfortable with his new friends right about now. Strange coming from a man who was willing to take on the GOP back in 2001 for their privatizing plans.

Politics does make strange bedfellows. We'll see how popular Mr. Novelli's support for his new friends makes him with his own board over the coming weeks.

Steve :: 11:21 PM :: Comments (3) :: Digg It!