issues2000

Topics in the News: Medicare & Medicaid


Dick Gephardt on Tax Reform : Feb 27, 2001
$900B tax cut protects other important interests

Democrats have a better plan, a balanced plan that treats the national budget the way you treat your household budget. Our plan provides $900 billion in tax cuts for all Americans. Our plan protects every dollar of the Social Security and Medicare trust funds. It strengthens Medicare and adds an affordable prescription drug benefit so seniors don�t have to choose between food and medicine. It strengthens Social Security rather than subjecting it to a volatile stock market, so that it will be there, not only for the baby boomers, but for their children and their grandchildren.

Our plan enables us to keep paying down the national debt, the debt we ran up in the �80s, so we can keep interest rates low and keep our economy growing. And it invests in the future of our country, by making sure every child can get an excellent education at a first-rate public school. We can�t accomplish any of these goals if we spend the entire surplus on the president�s tax cut.

Click for Dick Gephardt on other issues.   Source: Democratic reply to Bush�s Message to Congress

Bob Wise on Health Care : Feb 14, 2001
$1.5M to provide healthcare access for every child

This Legislature has acted wisely in establishing a Children�s Health Insurance Program to help the uninsured children of working families. But this program has yet to reach many eligible children.

I have included one and a half million dollars in the budget to cover additional children. And we will work aggressively - and cut through red tape - to make sure every child in West Virginia has access to coverage - whether under CHIP, Medicaid, or private insurance. Every child. That�s my goal.

Click for Bob Wise on other issues.   Source: State of the State Address to West Virginia Legislature

Bob Wise on Health Care : Feb 14, 2001
More discounts for prescription drugs

We now have a strategy to contain prescription drug costs: we�re going to create a pharmacy benefit program for our poorest senior citizens. We�re going to expand the discount program for seniors above the poverty level. We�re developing a drug benefit plan that could be an add-on for people on Medicare and employer-based insurance. And we�re going to pool the buying power of all the state agencies that purchase medicine and use this to drive a harder bargain with the drug companies.
Click for Bob Wise on other issues.   Source: State of the State Address to West Virginia Legislature

Tommy Thompson on Health Care : Feb 2, 2001
Vows to protect Medicare, add drug benefit

We will modernize Medicare so it is effective and financially sound for today�s seniors and for tomorrow�s. And, we must find a way to provide seniors and the disabled affordable access to prescription drugs. In the next few weeks, we will craft a Patient�s Bill of Rights. We will aggressively act to provide access to affordable health insurance for the more than 43 million Americans who are uninsured.
Click for Tommy Thompson on other issues.   Source: Introductory speech to HHS Employees

Dick Gephardt on Tax Reform : Feb 1, 2001
Bush tax cut plan threatens our prosperity

Democrats contend that Bush�s tax cut plan already is too big and ineffectual as a stimulant. They say it would leave too little to overhaul Social Security and Medicare programs for retiring baby boomers.

House Minority Leader Dick Gephardt warned that Bush�s tax plan �threatens our prosperity and could return us to the big budget deficits of the 1980s. I, for one, have learned a valuable lesson from the 1981 Reagan tax cut. I do not intend to repeat that mistake.�

Click for Dick Gephardt on other issues.   Source: MSNBC.com

Bob Holden on Health Care : Jan 30, 2001
Use tobacco settlement to pay for senior prescriptions

I want to see that our state�s portion of the national tobacco settlement is used for vital health care needs, [including] helping our senior citizens cope with skyrocketing prescription costs. As you know, Medicare doesn�t cover prescription drugs, and many of our seniors certainly cannot afford to buy separate insurance. Prescription drug relief for seniors is one of my highest priorities this year. Under my plan, no eligible senior will pay more than $1,500 a person or $3,000 a family for their prescription drugs in any one year. In addition, those seniors and those disabled Missourians on Medicare or Supplemental Security Income who do not already have insurance coverage for prescriptions will be able to buy their medicines at reduced rates-up to 20% less than they are currently paying. Because of these actions, we will be able to phase out our present prescription drug tax credit, which has failed to help those seniors who most need our assistance because of catastrophic health care costs.
Click for Bob Holden on other issues.   Source: State of the State speech in Missouri House Chambers

George W. Bush on Health Care : Jan 29, 2001
Senior Rx: �Immediate Helping Hand� now; more later

President Bush proposes to help low-income senior citizens obtain prescription drugs, but will include a message that he would consider broader Medicare changes that might speed up a prescription-drug benefit for all seniors. �We understand that there are many on the Hill who believe it should be done as part of comprehensive Medicare reform, and we will be open-minded on that,� a White House official said. The change is a new instance of Bush�s willingness to alter details of his programs to achieve his broad goals in a Congress where Republicans hold tissue-thin control.

Bush�s prescription drug plan, called �Immediate Helping Hand,� would provide $48 billion to states over four years so they could cover the full cost of drugs for the poorest senior citizens, and part of the cost for those who are slightly better off. As part of his broader plan for Medicare, Bush favors eventually paying at least 25% of the premium costs for prescription drug coverage for all seniors.

Click for George W. Bush on other issues.   Source: Mike Allen, Washington Post, Page A12

Kenny Guinn on Health Care : Jan 22, 2001
Fund alternatives to long-term care for seniors

With the fastest growing senior population in the nation, Nevada must plan ahead. Therefore, I am requesting funding to study alternative living support, long-term care, and other programs to address our seniors� needs effectively and efficiently into the future. But for those seniors who need our help today, I propose to increase Medicaid waivers by 40 percent to allow seniors to live in their communities and homes rather than hospitals.
Click for Kenny Guinn on other issues.   Source: State of the State Address to the Nevada Legislature

Jim Gilmore on Health Care : Jan 10, 2001
$25M more for medical care for most vulnerable citizens

There are certain men and women who those of us in government must always remember. Our most vulnerable citizens - the poor, the sick, the elderly, the disabled - often have no other alternative than help from the government.

Thousands of needy adults and children all across Virginia depend on Medicaid for their medical care. But with the rising cost of services and the growing use of those services, the financial burden on the state has increased dramatically. I propose we fully fund Medicaid this year. In addition, I propose $25 million to compensate the Medical College of Virginia for the care they provide patients who don�t have insurance or whose treatment isn�t covered by Medicaid. We must leave no Virginian behind, especially the poor who can�t afford medical care.

Click for Jim Gilmore on other issues.   Source: State of the Commonwealth Address to VA General Assembly

Jim Geringer on Health Care : Jan 10, 2001
More funding for prescription drugs & senior care

Wyoming will benefit from our hard work this year to improve care for our elderly. In addition to the expanded funding that I�ve recommended in my budget request for health care services and prescription drugs, I support the proposals developed with your help for long-term care reform, providing seniors with access to assisted living, expanding home based care, re-engineering Medicaid�s arcane administrative details, and giving seniors a boost to their personal needs allowance.
Click for Jim Geringer on other issues.   Source: State of the State Address to Wyoming Legislature

Bill Graves on Health Care : Jan 8, 2001
More funding for Medicaid matching & pharmaceuticals

We will match federal Medicaid dollars so that low-income women diagnosed with breast or cervical cancer can better access treatment for these all-too-common, yet curable, diseases. Until now, Medicaid dollars could only be used to screen for these diseases; now they can provide treatment. Also underway is a pharmaceutical buy-back program to allow long-term care facilities to return to pharmacies unused medications for repackaging. We anticipate savings of at least $1.4 million a year.
Click for Bill Graves on other issues.   Source: State of the state address to Kansas legislature

Adam Schiff on Health Care : Jan 1, 2001
Let patients and doctors decide; preserve Medicare

HMO REFORM: Supports the �Patients Bill of Rights� to make sure critical health care decisions are made by patients and thier doctors - not insurance company executives.

MEDICARE: Will work to preserve Medicare without unnecessary cuts in benefits.

Click for Adam Schiff on other issues.   Source: Campaign web site AdamSchiff2000.com

Donny DiFrancesco on Health Care : Dec 25, 2000
More funds for senior prescriptions, charity care, Medicaid

Click for Donny DiFrancesco on other issues.   Source: New Jersey congressional voting records

George W. Bush on Principles & Values : Dec 13, 2000
Together, we can unite and accomplish goals

Click for George W. Bush on other issues.   Source: Acceptance speech in Austin TX

Zell Miller on Health Care : Nov 7, 2000
Use budget surplus to fund senior prescription drugs

I will work to expand Medicare to cover the cost of prescription drugs, so seniors don�t have to choose between paying their rent and buying the prescription drugs they need. Part of the surplus would be used to begin doing this for low-income seniors in 2001 and would be fully implemented forall by 2008. Government would pay 50 percent up to maximum of $2000 when the program starts, increasing to $5000 by 2008.
Click for Zell Miller on other issues.   Source: AARP interview: AARP Voters Guides

Natural Law Party on Health Care : Nov 7, 2000
Save Medicare by rewarding good health & providing choice

We support financial incentives that will prevent abuse of the health care system. These include medical savings accounts for Medicare and Medicaid subscribers, which will provide financial rewards for good health & vouchers enabling Medicare and Medicaid subscribers to choose any insurance plan or provider they desire. Through our approach of preventive health care and financial incentives, we can rescue Medicare and Medicaid from bankruptcy & save $500 billion a year in health care costs.
Click for Natural Law Party on other issues.   Source: Natural Law Party Platform 2000

Natural Law Party on Health Care : Nov 7, 2000
Focus on prevention and reward good health

Support prevention, thereby shifting our focus from disease to health. Recent research shows that 70% of diseases in America are caused by an epidemic of unhealthy habits. Support the introduction of financial incentives that will prevent abuse of the system, including (1) medical savings accounts for Medicare and Medicaid subscribers, which will provide financial rewards for good health; and (2) vouchers enabling Medicare and Medicaid enrollees to choose any insurance or provider they desire.
Click for Natural Law Party on other issues.   Source: Natural Law Party�s �50-point Action Plan�

John Ashcroft on Health Care : Nov 7, 2000
Medicare lockbox; more funding too

Click for John Ashcroft on other issues.   Source: JohnAshcroft.org, campaign web site

Al Gore on Families & Children : Nov 6, 2000
Fiscal discipline helps single people as well as families

Q: What is one example of something in your plans that would improve opportunities for single adults past their college years?

A:In just a few days, Americans will have a choice between two very different visions for America. My vision is of responsible tax cuts targeted to help the middle-class, paying down the national debt to strengthen Social Security, Medicare and our economy and making key investments in education, health care, law enforcement and the environment. Single adults will benefit from my plan to ensure that Social Security is there when they retire, while creating a new 401 (k)-style investment plan to help people save for retirement, buy a first home or get new job training. They will benefit from good new jobs that result from fiscal discipline and key investments in new technologies. And they will have an easier time buying a home or paying off student loans, as we eliminate the national debt to keep down interest rates.

Click for Al Gore on other issues.   Source: Associated Press

Jean Carnahan on Tax Reform : Nov 5, 2000
Targeted tax cuts to working families

We [should] invest in our future, [with] a real patients� bill of rights, and a prescription drug under Medicare, and that it was important to give targeted tax cuts to working families so they could send their child to school or they could care for an elderly parent or buy a home. I would have an additional commitment to some things involving women. I�m very concerned about breast cancer research, pay equity, child care. I would carry that additional commitment and even more intensely.
Click for Jean Carnahan on other issues.   Source: This Week with Cokie Roberts

Jean Carnahan on Health Care : Nov 5, 2000
Medicare Rx plan;more breast cancer research

We [should] invest in our future, [with] a real patients� bill of rights, and a prescription drug under Medicare, and that it was important to give targeted tax cuts to working families so they could send their child to school or they could care for an elderly parent or buy a home. I would have an additional commitment to some things involving women. I�m very concerned about breast cancer research, pay equity, child care. I would carry that additional commitment and even more intensely.
Click for Jean Carnahan on other issues.   Source: This Week with Cokie Roberts

John Ashcroft on Social Security : Nov 5, 2000
Architect of the Social Security lockbox

After [Mel Carnahan�s death], we began to focus just on the issues that are very important to people. Better and safer schools through a classroom trust fund, and issues like the lockbox for Social Security.

I believe the people are going to respond constructively to issues like securing Social Security in the lockbox. You know, I�m the architect of the lockbox, and we need to extend that, and extend the ability of Medicare to deal with older citizens by giving them prescription drug coverage.

Click for John Ashcroft on other issues.   Source: ABC This Week with Cokie Roberts

Jean Carnahan on Health Care : Nov 4, 2000
Supports Patient Bill of Rights

Jean Carnahan made speeches several days a week on her husband�s Senate campaign trail and worked on state legislation for better health care and education. She advocated the Equal Rights Amendment, gun control, & workplace child-care centers. �Democrats in Washington are struggling to save Social Security, to strengthen Medicare, to pay down the national debt, to provide a patient�s bill of rights and to give targeted tax cuts that don�t harm services to the neediest in our society,� she said.
Click for Jean Carnahan on other issues.   Source: Kevin Murphy, The Kansas City Star

George W. Bush on Principles & Values : Nov 3, 2000
They have not led. We will.

said, �We�ll say you can have other options, you know why? Because we trust you.�

[Bush concluded by echoing his nomination speech theme], again hitting Gore on the Clinton-Gore administration�s record on Medicare and Social Security: �On all the big issues facing this country, our message on November 7 will be loud and clear: You�ve had your chance. You have not led, and we will.�

Click for George W. Bush on other issues.   Source: CNN.com report from West Allis, WI

Zell Miller on Health Care : Oct 30, 2000
Guarantee Rx drug for all seniors under Medicare

Q: What about prescription medicine?

A: In America, no one should have to choose between medicine and food. I want to see a guaranteed prescription drug benefit for all seniors under Medicare. There�s a bipartisan plan in the Senate that I am co-sponsoring that is better than either plan being offered by the presidential candidates. It helps seniors get their drugs more quickly and with less red tape than the Bush plan, and it gives more choice with less expense than the Gore plan.

Click for Zell Miller on other issues.   Source: The Macon (GA) Telegraph

Al Gore on Health Care : Oct 17, 2000
Drug companies spend more on ads than on research

Q: What about expensive prescription drugs?

BUSH: Step one is to reform the Medicare system. I want to call upon Republicans and Democrats to take care of a senior prescription drug program. I think it�s important to have what�s called Immediate Helping Hand, which is direct money to states so seniors don�t have to chose between food and medicine.

GORE: I have never been afraid to take on the big drug companies. They are now spending more money on advertising than they are on research. They�re trying to artificially extend the monopoly so they can keep charging high prices. I want to streamline the approval of generic drugs so that we bring the price down. I proposed a prescription drug benefit under Medicare. You pick your own doctor and the doctor chooses the prescription and nobody can overrule your doctor. You go to your own pharmacy and Medicare pays half. If you�re poor, they pay all of it. If you have extraordinarily high costs, then they pay all over $4,000 out of pocket.

Click for Al Gore on other issues.   Source: St. Louis debate

George W. Bush on Health Care : Oct 17, 2000
Give states money to help poor seniors buy medicine

Q: What about expensive prescription drugs?

BUSH: Step one is to reform the Medicare system. I want to call upon Republicans and Democrats to take care of a senior prescription drug program. I think it�s important to have what�s called Immediate Helping Hand, which is direct money to states so seniors don�t have to chose between food and medicine.

GORE: I have never been afraid to take on the big drug companies. They are now spending more money on advertising than they are on research. They�re trying to artificially extend the monopoly so they can keep charging high prices. I want to streamline the approval of generic drugs so that we bring the price down. I proposed a prescription drug benefit under Medicare. You pick your own doctor and the doctor chooses the prescription and nobody can overrule your doctor. You go to your own pharmacy and Medicare pays half. If you�re poor, they pay all of it. If you have extraordinarily high costs, then they pay all over $4,000 out of pocket.

Click for George W. Bush on other issues.   Source: St. Louis debate

Al Gore on Health Care : Oct 11, 2000
Claims of Bush�s choices & benefits are underestimated

GORE: A married man, 70 years old, with income of $25,000 a year. under Bush�s plan, would not get one penny for four to five years.

ANALYSIS: This is TRUE if the couple�s annual drug bill does not exceed $6,000. If it did, under Bush�s plan, the government would pay the rest.

GORE: And after 4 to 5 years, they would be forced to go into an HMO or to an insurance company.

ANALYSIS: This is NOT TRUE. They would not be forced into an HMO or private plan-they could choose to remain in Medicare.

Click for Al Gore on other issues.   Source: Presidential Debate, Boston Globe, �Number Crunch�, p. A15

George W. Bush on Principles & Values : Oct 11, 2000
The president must have credibility; Gore doesn�t

Q: Do you think the voters should question the Vice President�s credibility?

BUSH: It�s important for the president to be credible with Congress and foreign nations. It�s something people need to consider. I�m going to defend my record against exaggerations. Exaggerations like only 5% of seniors receive benefits under my Medicare package. That�s what he said the other day. That�s simply not the case.

GORE: I got some of the details wrong last week. I�m sorry about that. One of the reasons I regret it is that getting a detail wrong interfered with my point. However many days that young girl in Florida stood in her classroom doesn�t change the fact that there are a lot of overcrowded classrooms in America and we need to do something about that. I can�t promise that I will never get another detail wrong. But I will promise you that I will work my heart out to get the big things right for the American people.

Q: Does that resolve the issue?

BUSH: That�s going to be up to the people.

Click for George W. Bush on other issues.   Source: Presidential Debate at Wake Forest

Al Gore on Principles & Values : Oct 11, 2000
Promises to get the big things right; sorry for exaggerating

Q: Do you think the voters should question the Vice President�s credibility?

BUSH: It�s important for the president to be credible with Congress and foreign nations. It�s something people need to consider. I�m going to defend my record against exaggerations. Exaggerations like only 5% of seniors receive benefits under my Medicare package. That�s what he said the other day. That�s simply not the case.

GORE: I got some of the details wrong last week. I�m sorry about that. One of the reasons I regret it is that getting a detail wrong interfered with my point. However many days that young girl in Florida stood in her classroom doesn�t change the fact that there are a lot of overcrowded classrooms in America and we need to do something about that. I can�t promise that I will never get another detail wrong. But I will promise you that I will work my heart out to get the big things right for the American people.

Q: Does that resolve the issue?

BUSH: That�s going to be up to the people.

Click for Al Gore on other issues.   Source: (X-ref Bush) Presidential Debate at Wake Forest

Rick Lazio on Health Care : Oct 8, 2000
Give uninsured employees a deduction to pay for health care

Q: Would you support a universal health care bill?

CLINTON: We need to take step-by-step progress toward providing insurance for every American. I�d expand the Children�s Health Insurance Program. I�d allow people between 55 and 65 to buy into Medicare. I want to see mental health considered on parity. He�s opposed the �patients� bill of rights� that is supported in a bipartisan coalition, as well as by 300 medical and health groups. And he�s gone for the GOP version of the prescription drug benefit, which wouldn�t cover 650,000 New Yorkers.

LAZIO: Mrs. Clinton�s plan in 1993 would have been an unmitigated disaster. No New Yorker would ever have written a bill that would have led to 75,000 jobs being destroyed, health care rationing and the destruction of many of our teaching hospitals. I have supported doubling the amount of money that we spend on health care research. I have voted for deductibility for those employees who are not covered by an employer�s plan.

Click for Rick Lazio on other issues.   Source: (X-ref Hillary) Senate debate in Manhattan

Hillary Clinton on Health Care : Oct 8, 2000
Health goal is affordable coverage for all

Q: Would you support a universal health care bill?

CLINTON: We need to take step-by-step progress toward providing insurance for every American. I�d expand the Children�s Health Insurance Program. I�d allow people between 55 and 65 to buy into Medicare. I want to see mental health considered on parity. He�s opposed the �patients� bill of rights� that is supported in a bipartisan coalition, as well as by 300 medical and health groups. And he�s gone for the GOP version of the prescription drug benefit, which wouldn�t cover 650,000 New Yorkers.

LAZIO: Mrs. Clinton�s plan in 1993 would have been an unmitigated disaster. No New Yorker would ever have written a bill that would have led to 75,000 jobs being destroyed, health care rationing and the destruction of many of our teaching hospitals. I have supported doubling the amount of money that we spend on health care research. I have voted for deductibility for those employees who are not covered by an employer�s plan.

Click for Hillary Clinton on other issues.   Source: Senate debate in Manhattan

Hillary Clinton on Principles & Values : Oct 8, 2000
Get New York a fair share of budget surplus & Medicaid

Q: As a junior senator, will you be able to ensure that N.Y. will receive its fair share of federal aid?

CLINTON: One of the issues I�ve been talking about is how we can get more of New York�s fair share. We have a chance to do that because we have a surplus. One of the biggest injustices is the Medicaid formula. I�ve come forward with a plan that would get us more money. I look forward to working with Chuck Schumer. I would be a vigorous proponent of what we need.

Click for Hillary Clinton on other issues.   Source: Senate debate in Manhattan

George W. Bush on Health Care : Oct 3, 2000
Medicare Rx plan: immediate help, then senior choice

GORE (to Bush): Under the Medicare prescription drug proposal I�m making, here�s how it works: You go to your own doctor and your doctor chooses your prescription, and no HMO or insurance company can take those choices away from you. Then you go to your own pharmacy, you fill the prescription and Medicare pays half the cost. If you�re in a very poor family or you have very high costs, Medicare will pay all the costs, a $25 premium and much better benefits than you can possibly find in the private sector.

BUSH: I�ve got a plan on Medicare that�s a two-stage plan that says we�re going to have immediate help for seniors in what I call �Immediate Helping Hand,� a $48 billion program. [Then,] seniors are going to have not only a Medicare plan where the poor seniors will have their prescriptions paid for, but there will be a variety of options. My plan not only trusts seniors with options, my plan sets aside $3.4 trillion for Medicare over the next 10 years.

Click for George W. Bush on other issues.   Source: Presidential debate, Boston MA

Al Gore on Health Care : Oct 3, 2000
Medicare Rx plan: you choose, Medicare pays

GORE: Under the Medicare prescription drug proposal I�m making, here�s how it works: You go to your own doctor and your doctor chooses your prescription, and no HMO or insurance company can take those choices away from you. Then you go to your own pharmacy, you fill the prescription and Medicare pays half the cost. If you�re in a very poor family or you have very high costs, Medicare will pay all the costs, a $25 premium and much better benefits than you can possibly find in the private sector.

BUSH: I�ve got a plan on Medicare that�s a two-stage plan that says we�re going to have immediate help for seniors in what I call �Immediate Helping Hand,� a $48 billion program. [Then,] seniors are going to have not only a Medicare plan where the poor seniors will have their prescriptions paid for, but there will be a variety of options. My plan not only trusts seniors with options, my plan sets aside $3.4 trillion for Medicare over the next 10 years.

Click for Al Gore on other issues.   Source: (X-ref Bush) Presidential debate, Boston MA

Al Gore on Government Reform : Oct 3, 2000
Use historic surplus to balance budget and help middle class

Q: What are the choices facing people in November?

GORE: We�ve got the biggest surplus in history. Will we use that prosperity wisely in a way that benefits all of our people and doesn�t go just to the few? I think we have to invest in education, protecting the environment, health care, a prescription drug benefit that goes to all seniors, not just to the poor; under Medicare, not relying on HMOs and insurance companies. I think that we have to help parents and strengthen families. I think we have got to have welfare reform taken to the next stage. I think that we have got to balance the budget every single year.

BUSH: He�s going to grow the federal government in the largest increase since Johnson in 1965. We�re talking about a massive government, folks. We�re talking about adding to or increasing 200 new programs, 20,000 new bureaucrats. Imagine how many IRS agents it�s going to take to be able to figure out his targeted tax cut for the middle class that excludes 50 million Americans.

Click for Al Gore on other issues.   Source: Presidential debate, Boston MA

George W. Bush on Government Reform : Oct 3, 2000
Gore plan will lead to massive government and bureaucracy

Q: What are the choices facing people in November?

GORE: We�ve got the biggest surplus in history. Will we use that prosperity wisely in a way that benefits all of our people and doesn�t go just to the few? I think we have to invest in education, protecting the environment, health care, a prescription drug benefit that goes to all seniors, not just to the poor; under Medicare, not relying on HMOs and insurance companies. I think that we have to help parents and strengthen families. I think we have got to have welfare reform taken to the next stage. I think that we have got to balance the budget every single year.

BUSH: He�s going to grow the federal government in the largest increase since Johnson in 1965. We�re talking about a massive government, folks. We�re talking about adding to or increasing 200 new programs, 20,000 new bureaucrats. Imagine how many IRS agents it�s going to take to be able to figure out his targeted tax cut for the middle class that excludes 50 million Americans.

Click for George W. Bush on other issues.   Source: (X-ref Gore) Presidential debate, Boston MA

Al Gore on Health Care : Oct 3, 2000
Put Medicare in lockbox so seniors can afford prescriptions

GORE: I will put Medicare in a lockbox. Under the governor�s plan, if you kept the same fee-for-service that you have now under Medicare, your premiums would go up by between 18 and 47%. There�s a man here named George McKinney. He�s 70 years old, he has high blood pressure, his wife has heart trouble. They have income of $25,000 a year. They cannot pay for their prescription drugs. Under my plan, half of their costs would be paid right away. Under Bush�s plan, they would get not one penny for four to five years, and then they would be forced to go into an HMO or to an insurance company, but there would be no limit on the premiums or the deductibles.

BUSH: I cannot let this go, the �We�re going to scare you in the voting booth.� Under my plan, the man gets immediate help with prescription drugs. It�s called �Immediate Helping Hand.�

GORE: If you make more than $25,000 a year, you don�t get a penny of help under the Bush prescription drug proposal for at least four to five years.

Click for Al Gore on other issues.   Source: Presidential debate, Boston MA

Al Gore on Health Care : Sep 30, 2000
Cover 12 million uninsured at a 10-year cost of $157 billion

Click for Al Gore on other issues.   Source: The Economist, �Issues 2000�

Al Gore on Abortion : Sep 30, 2000
Opposes partial birth abortion, but opposes banning it

Gore�s approach to abortion is just as pragmatic as Bush�s. As a Congressman for a conservative Tennessee district, he cast more votes against abortion than in favor. But as he became a national figure he changed his position, and now claims that he will do everything in his power to prevent Roe v. Wade from being overturned. Gore:
  • opposes parental-notification laws
  • Opposes partial birth abortion, but also opposes Republican attempts to ban it
  • supports Medicaid funding of abortion.
    Click for Al Gore on other issues.   Source: The Economist, �Issues 2000� special

    Al Gore on Health Care : Sep 25, 2000
    Stronger penalties for HMOs who drop seniors

    �I won�t go along with plans that would force (seniors) into HMOs. The other side has called Medicare a �government HMO.� We will no longer just accept the rising wave of HMOs dropping seniors and denying them coverage, all to enhance their bottom line.�� He proposed doubling the minimum requirement for HMOs contracting with the government to provide health care to the elderly and disabled in Medicare. He also would double the penalty for HMOs who drop patients.
    Click for Al Gore on other issues.   Source: AP Story, NY Times

    Al Gore on Health Care : Sep 23, 2000
    Protect Medicare�s funds with �lockbox�

    Click for Al Gore on other issues.   Source: Medicare at a Crossroads, page 5

    Al Gore on Health Care : Sep 23, 2000
    Modernize Medicare with choice, efficiency, competition

    Click for Al Gore on other issues.   Source: Medicare at a Crossroads, page 6

    Al Gore on Health Care : Sep 23, 2000
    Encourage competition, ensure choice, stop abuses

    The plan would have health providers compete for the business of seniors on the basis of both quality and price. The plan will also crack down on fraud, waste, and abuse and take steps to rationalize cost sharing, reform Medigap, and ensure adequate provider payment rates. The plan will make Medicare more competitive by ensuring choice, and it will make it harder for HMOs to drop seniors and will forbid �cherry-picking.�
    Click for Al Gore on other issues.   Source: Medicare at a Crossroads, page 45

    Al Gore on Health Care : Sep 23, 2000
    Free preventive cancer screenings for Medicare beneficiaries

    In order to eliminate financial barriers to critical preventive services, the Gore plan eliminates the Part B deductible and co-payment for Medicare preventive services: hepatitis B vaccination, colorectal cancer screening, bone mass measurements, prostate cancer screening, diabetes self-management benefits, pelvic exams, and screening mammograms.
    Click for Al Gore on other issues.   Source: Medicare at a Crossroads, page 39-40

    Al Gore on Health Care : Sep 23, 2000
    Allow 55-65 year olds to buy into Medicare

    Gore believes that many Americans between the ages of 55-65 - the fastest growing group of uninsured in the country and some of the most vulnerable to the vagaries of the private market - should be able to buy into Medicare.
    Click for Al Gore on other issues.   Source: Medicare at a Crossroads, page 36

    Al Gore on Health Care : Sep 23, 2000
    Too many seniors have to choose between drugs and rent

    When Medicare was created, prescription drugs were not considered an essential part of American health care. Today, they are at the core of medical treatment. And yet, nearly half of all Medicare beneficiaries go without prescription drug coverage. Older Americans who lack prescription drug coverage typically pay 15% more for drugs than insurers who can negotiate price discounts. At this time of great prosperity, it is unacceptable that so many seniors have to choose between medicine and food and rent.
    Click for Al Gore on other issues.   Source: Medicare at a Crossroads, page 28

    George W. Bush on Health Care : Sep 17, 2000
    Blueprint: Senior choice; Rx benefit; tax breaks

    Click for George W. Bush on other issues.   Source: Blueprint for the Middle Class

    Hillary Clinton on Principles & Values : Sep 13, 2000
    Hillary: Lazio has chutzpah to call himself �mainstream�

    CLINTON: Listening to the congressman�s response, reminds me of a word I�ve heard a lot of this past year: chutzpah. He stands here and tells us that he�s a moderate, mainstream, independent member of Congress. Well, in fact he was a deputy whip to Newt Gingrich. He voted to shut the government down. He voted to cut $270 billion from Medicare. He voted for the biggest education cuts in our history. Time and time again when he�s had a choice to make, particularly at the critical turning point, when our country was really on the line with Newt Gingrich�s Contract With America, he stood with the Republican leadership and Newt Gingrich.

    LAZIO: Mrs. Clinton�s last remark has to redefine the word chutzpah. Mrs. Clinton, you, of all people, shouldn�t try to make guilt by association. Newt Gingrich isn�t running in this race, I�m running in this race. Let�s talk about my record. Let�s lower taxes. Let�s deregulate energy. And let�s build on my work in Congress already to get the job done.

    Click for Hillary Clinton on other issues.   Source: Clinton-Lazio debate, Buffalo NY

    Rick Lazio on Principles & Values : Sep 13, 2000
    Lazio: Hillary has chutzpah to make guilt by association

    CLINTON: Listening to the congressman�s response, reminds me of a word I�ve heard a lot of this past year: chutzpah. He stands here and tells us that he�s a moderate, mainstream, independent member of Congress. Well, in fact he was a deputy whip to Newt Gingrich. He voted to shut the government down. He voted to cut $270 billion from Medicare. He voted for the biggest education cuts in our history. Time and time again when he�s had a choice to make, particularly at the critical turning point, when our country was really on the line with Newt Gingrich�s Contract With America, he stood with the Republican leadership and Newt Gingrich.

    LAZIO: Mrs. Clinton�s last remark has to redefine the word chutzpah. Mrs. Clinton, you, of all people, shouldn�t try to make guilt by association. Newt Gingrich isn�t running in this race, I�m running in this race. Let�s talk about my record. Let�s lower taxes. Let�s deregulate energy. And let�s build on my work in Congress already to get the job done.

    Click for Rick Lazio on other issues.   Source: Clinton-Lazio debate, Buffalo NY

    Jon Corzine on Social Security : Sep 12, 2000
    Commit funds to secure Medicare & Soc. Sec. �absolutely�

    We must commit enough of the federal surplus to save Social Security and to protect Medicare. And we must be bold: Long term care for seniors who need it must be secured as a fundamental right, not a privilege for the wealthy.
    Click for Jon Corzine on other issues.   Source: Web site www.votecorzine.org

    John Ashcroft on Health Care : Sep 9, 2000
    $150M for basic health care for uninsured

    Q. Even if Medicaid and the State Children�s Health Insurance Program enroll all �eligible� children, there would still be millions of uninsured children. How do you propose insuring each and every child in America?

    A. Because of our state�s limited government resources, it is important to focus on children whose families cannot afford health insurance. I support initiatives that give uninsured families more options to obtain health insurance, such as allowing full deductibility for health insurance costs for families headed by self-employed individuals, and health insurance tax deductions/credits for families who cannot obtain coverage from an employer. I continue to strongly support funding increases for consolidated health centers, which give uninsured individuals - including children - access to basic health care. Most recently I called for a $150 million increase in community health centers funding for FY2001.

    Click for John Ashcroft on other issues.   Source: NACHRI Interview (ChildrensHospitals.net/nachri)

    Lauren Beth Gash on Social Security : Sep 9, 2000
    Fight any attempts to reduce benefits or privatize

    Millions of Americans have worked their entire lives and paid into Social Security- they have earned their retirement benefits. Now there are proposals to raise the retirement age to receive benefits, and gamble Social Security Trust Funds in risky stocks on Wall Street. Lauren supports using the federal budget surplus to protect Social Security and Medicare. She will fight any attempts to raise the eligibility age to receive Social Security and any proposal to privatize the program.
    Click for Lauren Beth Gash on other issues.   Source: www.laurenbethgash.com/

    Lauren Beth Gash on Health Care : Sep 9, 2000
    Comprehensive Medicare prescription drug coverage

    Lauren supports creating a comprehensive Medicare prescription drug coverage benefit and requiring pharmaceutical companies to offer prescription drugs to seniors at the same discount rates they offer the big insurance companies.
    Click for Lauren Beth Gash on other issues.   Source: www.laurenbethgash.com/

    Ralph Nader on Health Care : Sep 8, 2000
    Medicare prescriptions covered under universal health care

    Q: Would elderly people with low incomes get all the prescription drugs they need at no cost to them under your proposals?

    A: Yes, under a system of universal health care. Price restraints should be placed on all drugs especially developed with taxpayer money, and multiple licenses should be issued for those drugs in order to stimulate competition and bring prices down. The Medicare authorities should negotiate lower drug prices, as the V.A. and the Pentagon are already doing.

    Click for Ralph Nader on other issues.   Source: Associated Press

    John Hagelin on Health Care : Sep 8, 2000
    80% reimbursement for Medicare prescriptions

    Q: Would elderly people with low incomes get all the prescription drugs they need at no cost to them under your proposals?

    A: My Medicare policy includes 80% reimbursements for those prescription drugs that have been scientifically proven to be effective. Medicare will negotiate the lowest prices for drugs: My prescription drug benefit will not become a form of corporate welfare for the pharmaceutical industry - nor lead to over-prescription of drugs.

    Click for John Hagelin on other issues.   Source: Associated Press

    Al Gore on Education : Sep 8, 2000
    $36B for tuition after saving Medicare & Social Security

    Gore told an audience that he hoped to boost college attendance and graduation rates by making college tuition tax-deductible, giving tax credits and deductions for college savings and keeping interest rates low for student loans. The full tuition strategy could cost the government as much as $36 billion. Immediate preservation of the Social Security and Medicare programs would ensure that education stayed a viable government priority leading into the next decade and beyond.
    Click for Al Gore on other issues.   Source: CNN.com

    Al Gore on Health Care : Sep 6, 2000
    $253B for Medicare prescriptions & subsidized premiums

    Medicare reform comparedGore�s planBush�s plan
    PremiumsStart at $25 per month, increasing to $44 by 2008.Will be determined by individual private health insurance companies, with higher premiums for more extensive coverage.
    Projected Cost$253 billion over 10 years$158 billion over 10 years, of which $48 billion would go for immediate prescription aid by 2004.
    Click for Al Gore on other issues.   Source: Boston Globe, p. A8

    George W. Bush on Health Care : Sep 6, 2000
    $158B for Medicare prescriptions & subsidized premiums

    Medicare reform comparedGore�s planBush�s plan
    PremiumsStart at $25 per month, increasing to $44 by 2008.Will be determined by individual private health insurance companies, with higher premiums for more extensive coverage.
    Projected Cost$253 billion over 10 years$158 billion over 10 years, of which $48 billion would go for immediate prescription aid by 2004.
    Click for George W. Bush on other issues.   Source: Boston Globe, p. A8

    George W. Bush on Health Care : Sep 5, 2000
    All seniors entitled to Medicare; poor seniors subsidized

    Click for George W. Bush on other issues.   Source: Speech �Modernizing Medicare,� Allentown, PA

    George W. Bush on Health Care : Sep 5, 2000
    Give seniors choice, not bureaucrats; give incentives too

    Click for George W. Bush on other issues.   Source: Speech �Modernizing Medicare,� Allentown, PA

    George W. Bush on Health Care : Sep 5, 2000
    Second bill to Congress: $48B for immediate Rx help

    During the transition to better Medicare coverage, we will provide $12 billion a year in direct aid to low-income seniors. My plan sets aside $158 billion additional dollars for Medicare over the next ten years. Four years to provide �An Immediate Helping Hand,� and an additional $110 billion for Medicare modernization. I have said that education reform will be the first bill I propose to Congress. The measure I am proposing today-immediate prescription drugs for seniors-will be my second bill.
    Click for George W. Bush on other issues.   Source: Speech �Modernizing Medicare,� Allentown, PA

    George W. Bush on Health Care : Sep 5, 2000
    Choice of Medicare, free equivalent, or adding own $

    [Seniors under Bush�s Medicare plan] will have a system with a proven track record. Nine million federal employees already have a similar plan. Seniors will get a book each year, listing all the health plans, and comparing their benefits. Seniors can stay in the current Medicare system, with no changes. They can choose another basic plan, for no cost at all. Or they can choose to pay a little more for a plan with additional benefits. And every low income senior will get a high-option plan for free.
    Click for George W. Bush on other issues.   Source: Speech �Modernizing Medicare,� Allentown, PA

    Joseph Lieberman on Health Care : Aug 31, 2000
    Voted to cut Medicare & raise age; now would not

    Gore rejected the majority conclusions reached last year by a bipartisan commission on Medicare, saying he would not support raising the Medicare eligibility age to 67 from 65, forcing the elderly into managed care, or raising premiums and co-payments.

    One of those who has supported such measures in the past is Lieberman, who sided with Republicans in several balanced-budget votes in 1997 to raise the eligibility age and to impose increases in premiums and fees for some Medicare recipients. �It is important to put these votes in context,� said Lieberman�s spokesman. �At the time projections were that the system would be bankrupt in four or five years. Senator Lieberman and a lot of other people saw it as necessary to salvage the program.�

    Lieberman voted last year against the recommendations of the bipartisan commission to further restrict eligibility and allow some additional charges for recipients. �His recent record shows he�s very much in synch with the vice president,� he said.

    Click for Joseph Lieberman on other issues.   Source: Kevin Sack & James Dao, NY Times

    Al Gore on Tax Reform : Aug 31, 2000
    Yes, it�s your money-but it�s your programs too

    �The other side has placed its top priority on taking virtually all of this projected surplus and giving it all in the form of a giant tax cut, mainly to the wealthy,� Gore said. �And their theory is that�s going to be good for the country, and they say it�s your money. Well, it is your money. But it�s your Medicare, it�s your Social Security, it�s your environment, it�s your school system, it�s your country.�
    Click for Al Gore on other issues.   Source: Kevin Sack & James Dao, NY Times

    Al Gore on Health Care : Aug 31, 2000
    1997 Medicare cuts went too far-put back $339B

    Gore renewed his call today for spending $339 billion over 10 years to add a prescription drug benefit to the Medicare program and to restore Medicare financing to teaching hospitals, nursing homes, rural hospitals, home health care aides, and rehabilitative services. Money for those programs was cut under the 1997 balanced budget act, and Gore said today that those reductions �went too far.�
    Click for Al Gore on other issues.   Source: Kevin Sack & James Dao, NY Times

    Ezola Foster on Social Security : Aug 29, 2000
    Help people without dependency: transition to IRAs

    Q: What is the Buchanan/Foster plan for seniors on Medicare?

    A: We want to protect seniors who are already on Medicare as well as getting Social Security. We want to take a look at that entire system and we will decide the best means to helping the people in most need whether they are seniors or young families. There is a way to help people without causing dependency. We support portable and private affordable solutions. We would guarantee benefits already promised to seniors and we would stop the raid on the trust fund and we would encourage employees to devote part of their earnings to Social Security alone. We would work with Congress to secure the system while allowing workers to transition to individual retirement accounts.

    Click for Ezola Foster on other issues.   Source: (X-ref Health) �Free Media�, Washington Post

    Ezola Foster on Health Care : Aug 29, 2000
    Portable and private affordable Medicare solutions

    Q: What is the Buchanan/Foster plan for seniors on Medicare?

    A: We want to protect seniors who are already on Medicare as well as getting Social Security. We want to take a look at that entire system and we will decide the best means to helping the people in most need whether they are seniors or young families. There is a way to help people without causing dependency. We support portable and private affordable solutions. We would guarantee benefits already promised to seniors and we would stop the raid on the trust fund and we would encourage employees to devote part of their earnings to Social Security alone. We would work with Congress to secure the system while allowing workers to transition to individual retirement accounts.

    Click for Ezola Foster on other issues.   Source: Interview on �Free Media�, Washington Post

    Al Gore on Social Security : Aug 18, 2000
    Dedicate the budget surplus first to saving Social Security

    I will not go along with any proposal to strip one out of every six dollars from the Social Security trust fund and privatize the Social Security that you�re counting on. That�s Social Security minus. Our plan is Social Security plus. We will balance the budget every year, and dedicate the budget surplus first to saving Social Security. Putting both Social Security and Medicare in an iron-clad lock box where the politicians can�t touch them -- to me, that kind of common sense is a family value.
    Click for Al Gore on other issues.   Source: Speech to the Democratic National Convention

    Bill Bradley on Health Care : Aug 15, 2000
    Mandatory insurance for children, at birth, federally paid

    When we enacted Medicare, we made a bold commitment to senior citizens. We need to make a similar commitment to our children. To fulfill this commitment, every child should be enrolled in a health insurance program from the moment of birth. Just as new parents must fill out a birth certificate and a Social Security form before leaving the hospital, they should also be required to enroll their newborn in one of the many children�s health insurance plans. Children who slip through the cracks could be enrolled at their first point of contact with the health care system, at day care, or upon entry to school.

    I believe the federal government should pay all or part of the health insurance costs for children in families with incomes under $50,000 a year. That�s about 54% of all children, including millions from middle-income families who worry constantly about medical costs.

    Click for Bill Bradley on other issues.   Source: The Journey From Here, by Bill Bradley, p. 30

    Democratic Party on Health Care : Aug 15, 2000
    Add prescription drug benefit to Medicare

    It is time we ended the tragedy of elderly Americans being forced to choose between meals and medication. It is time we modernized Medicare with a prescription drug benefit. With the number of Americans on Medicare expected to double in the next 35 years, Al Gore has taken responsibility by proposing a Medicare Lock Box that would insure Medicare surpluses are used for Medicare.
    Click for Democratic Party on other issues.   Source: Democratic National Platform

    Democratic Party on Health Care : Aug 15, 2000
    Every American should have affordable health insurance

    We must redouble efforts to bring the uninsured into coverage. We should guarantee access to affordable health care for every child. We should expand coverage to working families. We seek to ensure that dislocated workers are provided affordable care. We should make health care affordable for small businesses. In addition, Americans aged 55 to 65 should be allowed to buy into the Medicare program to get the coverage they need.
    Click for Democratic Party on other issues.   Source: Democratic National Platform

    Bill Bradley on Civil Rights : Aug 15, 2000
    Quest for racial unity is a defining moral issue

    The quest for racial unity remains the defining moral issue of our time. It�s one of the reasons I first ran for public office. The work I did helping expand Medicaid for women and children who are poor, to raise the Earned Income Tax Credit, to reduce infant mortality, to assure child support enforcement, to protect federal aid to school districts that serve the poor, and to support every piece of civil rights legislation that came through the Senate all flowed from my convictions about racial unity.
    Click for Bill Bradley on other issues.   Source: The Journey From Here, by Bill Bradley, p. 49

    Republican Party on Health Care : Aug 12, 2000
    A reformed Medicare will give seniors choice, flexibility

    Give older Americans access to the insurance plan Congress has, including medical savings accounts. Build on the strengths of the free market system, offer seniors real choices, and make sure there are incentives for the private sector to develop drugs. No more one-size-fits-all. Medicare also needs new measures of solvency. We must reduce the administrative complexities. A reformed Medicare program will provide reimbursement at levels that will permit providers to continue to care for patients.
    Click for Republican Party on other issues.   Source: Republican Platform adopted at GOP National Convention

    Dick Cheney on Health Care : Jul 26, 2000
    Prescription drug benefits for Medicare recipients

    Cheney said he opposed some worthy social programs while in Congress because the country couldn�t afford them, given budget deficits and the need to increase military spending to fight the Cold War. Given the current economic climate, Cheney said: �We�re now in a position to be able to look at doing some things from the compassionate standpoint.� He mentioned prescription drug benefits for Medicare recipients, something his fellow conservatives fought for some time before offering a plan of their own. Cheney said he opposed some worthy social programs while in Congress because the country couldn�t afford them, given budget deficits and the need to increase military spending to fight the Cold War. Given the current economic climate, Cheney said: �We�re now in a position to be able to look at doing some things from the compassionate standpoint.� He mentioned prescription drug benefits for Medicare recipients, something his fellow conservatives fought for some time before offering a plan of their own.
    Click for Dick Cheney on other issues.   Source: D. Ian Hopper, Associated Press

    George W. Bush on Principles & Values : Jul 25, 2000
    Picked Cheney as a valuable partner and fully capable

    I asked Dick Cheney whether he�d be willing to join me to accomplish some great goals for our country: to save and strengthen Social Security; to improve Medicare and provide prescription drugs for the elderly; to reform our public schools; and to rebuild our military to keep the peace.

    Early this morning I called and asked him to join me in renewing America�s purpose together. So I�m proud to announce that Dick Cheney, a man of great integrity, sound judgment and experience, is my choice to be the next vice president of the United States.

    I have to admit something. I didn�t pick Dick Cheney because of Wyoming�s three electoral votes, although we�re going to work hard to earn them. I picked him because he is without a doubt fully capable of being the president of the United States. And I picked him because he will be a valuable partner in a Bush administration.

    Click for George W. Bush on other issues.   Source: Statement on Vice Presidential selection

    Dick Cheney on Principles & Values : Jul 25, 2000
    Accepts nomination help change tone in Washington

    Three months ago, when Governor Bush asked me to head up his search team I honestly did not expect that I would be standing here today.

    Governor, I�m honored and proud to join your team and I enthusiastically accept the challenge for this reason: I believe you have the vision and the courage to be a great president.

    Governor Bush is seeking not only to win an election, but also to lead our nation. He�s confronting the tough issues: strengthening Social Security and Medicare, reforming our public schools, cutting taxes and rebuilding America�s military.

    I look forward to working with you, governor, to change the tone in Washington, to restore a spirit of civility and respect and cooperation. It�s time for America�s leaders to stop pointing the finger of blame and to begin sharing the credit for success. Big changes are coming to Washington, and I want to be a part of them.

    Click for Dick Cheney on other issues.   Source: Statement on Vice Presidential selection

    Jim Jeffords on Social Security : Jul 2, 2000
    Raise FICA on rich; support lock-box

    Click for Jim Jeffords on other issues.   Source: vote-smart.org 2000 NPAT

    Mark Dayton on Health Care : Jul 2, 2000
    Expand Medicare Rx coverage & other coverage

    My plan for universal health care is based on the belief that our society should provide and finance good health care for all Americans. I support making health insurance premiums tax deductible for individuals and the self-employed immediately. In order to lower the cost of health insurance, purchasing pools would be established. I will continue to support the health care systems we have in place such as Medicaid, Medicare and Veterans health benefits and will work to expand coverage and benefits where most needed. The centerpiece of my agenda is the expansion of Medicare coverage for prescription drugs for all seniors.

    My plan will also provide discounts of at least 10% on all prescription drugs so that all Americans will benefit. I believe that efforts should be made to correct the inequities of Medicare reimbursement rates between urban and rural areas.

    Click for Mark Dayton on other issues.   Source: Minnesota Newspaper Association Election Questionnaire

    Al Gore on Health Care : Jul 1, 2000
    Curb excess pharmaceutical profits made at consumer expense

    Gore cast himself as a longtime critic of what he said were the industry�s excessive prices and profits: �I don�t see myself as a basher of the pharmaceutical companies,� Gore said. �I see myself as opposing the excesses that have accompanied their enormous market power, excesses that have come at the expense of consumers.� With his heightened, anti-industry stand that consumers are �being ripped off� by drug makers, Gore is positioning himself as a champion of a far-reaching Medicare prescription drug benefit for senior citizens. He said the industry�s profits were out of line, and he favors policies that would, in effect, cut into profits and curb prices. For example, Gore said he supported a legislative amendment, requiring drug makers to agree to reasonable prices for treatments invented in collaboration with government scientists. He also supports requiring drug companies to pay a fee to the government for medicines developed with the help of government grants.
    Click for Al Gore on other issues.   Source: Sheryl Gay Stolberg, NY Times

    Dick Gephardt on Health Care : Jun 29, 2000
    Focus on seniors; no blank checks to insurance companies

    Medicare has worked for over 35 years. Gephardt supports a real prescription drug proposal that will ensure that no senior is left out in the cold when it comes to prescription drug coverage. The goal in Congress should not be to write a blank check to insurance companies, with the hope that they will offer coverage in your area at a price that middle-income seniors can afford. Instead, the goal must be to allow every senior the option to enroll in a plan that is affordable, definable, and guaranteed.
    Click for Dick Gephardt on other issues.   Source: Press Release, �Prescription Drug Coverage�

    Dick Gephardt on Health Care : Jun 29, 2000
    More funding for Meaningful Prescription Drug Coverage

    Congressman Gephardt in June introduced H.R. 4770, which would allow all Medicare beneficiaries, regardless of income, the option to enroll in a voluntary Medicare prescription drug benefit program. Under this program, Medicare would initially pay half of all prescription drug costs, up to $2000, and all drug costs over and above $4000. These benefits would increase over time as consumer prices rise in general.
    Click for Dick Gephardt on other issues.   Source: Press Release, �Prescription Drug Coverage�

    Al Gore on Health Care : Jun 14, 2000
    Health Care Trust Fund to expand coverage

    Gore called for the creation of a Health Care Trust Fund to help move toward the day when every American has affordable health coverage. The trust fund would help expand access to affordable coverage to every child and millions of adults. Gore would allow Americans 55 to 65 to buy into Medicare, expand coverage to parents whose children are eligible for Medicaid or the Children�s Health Insurance program, and provide tax credits for small businesses and individuals without job-based health care.
    Click for Al Gore on other issues.   Source: Press Release, �Medicare Lock Box�

    Al Gore on Tax Reform : Jun 7, 2000
    Help caregivers with tax reform, nursing home alternatives

    Click for Al Gore on other issues.   Source: Press Release, �National Caregiving Initiative�

    Al Gore on Health Care : Jun 6, 2000
    $30B over 10 years to help families with elder care

    Gore called for giving families with long-term care needs and their caregivers a $3,000 tax credit and reforms making it easier for Medicaid to cover care at home and in community settings in addition to nursing homes. The total cost of Gore�s new National Caregiving and Family Support Initiative is nearly $30 billion over ten years. �By making elder-care more affordable, we can strengthen our families across their generations, and honor the parents who did so much to make us what we are today.�
    Click for Al Gore on other issues.   Source: Press Release, �Meet Long-Term Care Needs�

    Rick Lazio on Abortion : Jun 4, 2000
    No Medicare funds for abortions; OK to fund privately abroad

    Lazio has consistently opposed efforts to make abortion illegal. He supported federal criminal penalties for blocking access to abortion clinics, and to allow organizations that provide their own money for abortions in developing countries to be eligible for international family-planning funds. But Lazio has also opposed using federal Medicaid money to pay for abortions for poor women, and he has consistently voted to outlaw the late-term procedure that anti-abortion forces call partial-birth abortion.
    Click for Rick Lazio on other issues.   Source: David Rosenbaum, New York Times

    Rick Lazio on Abortion : May 25, 2000
    No funding for abortion; but don�t criminalize it

    Lazio opposes late-term abortions (called partial-birth abortions by critics) and has voted against government funding for abortions for poor women on Medicaid, women in prison and women in the military. �I do not want to criminalize abortion,� Lazio said in an upstate campaign swing Monday. �On the other hand, I want to make it rarer and I don�t think just because we have a right, that we need to subsidize that right.�
    Click for Rick Lazio on other issues.   Source: Associated Press

    Al Gore on Social Security : May 10, 2000
    Ensure health care & retirement security for aging veterans

    Gore highlighted his record of fighting for veterans and his plans for saving Social Security and strengthening Medicare to ensure health care and retirement security for aging veterans. �We have a responsibility to each and every one of our veterans,� Gore said. �America must do more for those who have risked everything to keep us free. I will fight for an unshakeable national commitment to our veterans.�

    Noting the number of Social Security enrollees is expected to double over the next 30 years, Gore highlighted his plan for saving Social Security. Gore�s balanced budget plan uses the entire Social Security surplus, $2.2 trillion over ten years, to improve Social Security and pay down the debt -- and dedicates the billions of dollars in interest saved from debt reduction to shore up the Social Security Trust Fund until at least 2050. Gore would strengthen prescription drug coverage for military retirees, and provide a comprehensive prescription drug plan for all seniors.

    Click for Al Gore on other issues.   Source: Press Release in Jacksonville, Ark.

    Rick Lazio on Health Care : May 9, 2000
    Supports Breast and Cervical Cancer Treatment Act

    [With the Breast & Cervical Cancer Treatment Act] we took a substantial stride towards giving thousands of American women the gift of life. No longer will women be consigned to a literal death sentence merely because they cannot afford medical insurance. Congress brought Mothers� Day a little bit early this year. Today�s legislation provides strong incentives for the individual States to include a Medicaid treatment package for those low-income women who are diagnosed with breast or cervical cancer.
    Click for Rick Lazio on other issues.   Source: Press Release; by Heather O�Farrell

    David McReynolds on Welfare & Poverty : May 2, 2000
    Housing, food, & health benefits for welfare recipients

    Click for David McReynolds on other issues.   Source: Vote-Smart.org NPAT questionnaire

    David McReynolds on Social Security : May 2, 2000
    Supports raising payroll tax; plus Lockbox

    Click for David McReynolds on other issues.   Source: Vote-Smart.org NPAT questionnaire

    George W. Bush on Health Care : Apr 2, 2000
    Private alternatives & state reforms come first

    Click for George W. Bush on other issues.   Source: GeorgeWBush.com: �Issues: Policy Points Overview�

    Al Gore on Health Care : Mar 1, 2000
    $300B over 15 years to keep Medicare solvent

    I am deeply committed to keeping Medicare strong for the future. When I became vice president in 1993, the Medicare trust fund was scheduled to run out in 1999. We took steps to keep it strong until 2015. However, given the fact that the number of people on Medicare is scheduled to double over the next few decades, Medicare will need additional resources to keep the trust fund strong for the future. That is why I have proposed devoting nearly $300 billion of the projected budget surplus over the next 15 years to keep Medicare solvent for at least the next quarter century. I also believe we should strengthen Medicare by adding a prescription drug benefit to help Medicare beneficiaries pay for their medicines. My plan has no deductible, and would eliminate cost-sharing and premiums for those living on low incomes. And it would provide additional support for those encountering catastrophic drug costs.
    Click for Al Gore on other issues.   Source: Associated Press, in Brockton (MA) Enterprise, p. B6

    George W. Bush on Health Care : Mar 1, 2000
    Medicare Rx drug coverage for low-income seniors

    Medicare is one of the most important contributions to seniors� health care ever enacted. I will work to strengthen Medicare by enhancing its financial stability and ensuring seniors have access to more comprehensive coverage better tailored to their health care needs. We now have an inefficient system that is run by a 132,000-page document where the government makes all the decisions. I support increasing competition and giving seniors the right to choose their health care plans that include basic coverage such as prescription drugs. We should also ensure prescription drug coverage is available for low-income seniors who otherwise cannot afford it.
    Click for George W. Bush on other issues.   Source: Associated Press, in Brockton (MA) Enterprise, p. B6

    John McCain on Tax Reform : Feb 27, 2000
    �Balanced approach�, and starts a flat tax system

    McCain�s pitch is that his tax cut plan is modest enough in size that it leaves plenty of money from the surplus tax revenues to deal with other needs. By expanding the 15% bracket to cover millions of additional taxpayers, he says, his plan amounts to a start on creating a system of flatter tax rates.

    �I want a balanced approach,� McCain says. �I put a whole lot of money into Social Security, Medicaid, and paying down the debt [and less] money into tax cuts.�

    Click for John McCain on other issues.   Source: New York Times, p. 22

    Al Gore on Tax Reform : Feb 21, 2000
    Save Social Security, Medicare, and address debt before cuts

    Q: Why won�t the candidates just keep the tax rates the same & pay off the national debt?
    A: I think this risky tax scheme is reckless & would be very harmful to our country, because what we need to do instead is to use the surplus to safeguard Social Security first and foremost. Secondly we need to put money from the surplus into the Medicare program to strengthen it before the retirement of the baby boom generation. Then we need to pay down the national debt because that keeps interest rates low.
    Click for Al Gore on other issues.   Source: Democrat debate in Harlem, NYC

    Bill Bradley on Health Care : Feb 21, 2000
    Pledges better health plan for every Medicaid patient

    GORE [to Bradley]: 50% of all of the Americans who have HIV/AIDS now get Medicaid; 90% of all the children with HIV/AIDS get Medicaid. Bradley�s proposal would eliminate the Medicaid program and replace it with a $150-a-month voucher with which you cannot purchase anything like the health care benefits that are now available under Medicaid.

    BRADLEY: [For AIDS patients under my plan], it�s the same services, it�s the same benefits. The only difference is that now if you have HIV, you can qualify for insurance. And tonight I pledge that any health care bill that I would sign would have every Medicaid patient on a better health plan than Medicaid is today.

    GORE: That�s not a plan, that�s a magic wand. It doesn�t work that way, because the problem that people with AIDS and other diseases have in the private health insurance market is that the insurance companies don�t want to take them. They want to get rid of them. You give them a $150-a-month voucher, they can�t buy it.

    Click for Bill Bradley on other issues.   Source: (X-ref from Gore) Democrat debate in Harlem, NYC

    Bill Bradley on Health Care : Feb 15, 2000
    �Outrageous scare tactics� on Medicare�s HIV treatment

    Gore claimed yesterday that Bradley�s health care plan would deprive people with HIV and AIDS of health coverage. Gore said Bradley�s plan would hurt poor people with HIV because it called for abolishing Medicaid. The government health care program for the poor.
    Bradley responded that his plan would call for current Medicaid recipients to receive coverage under the system of private insurance that now covers federal employees, which he contends would be superior to Medicaid.
    Gore�s press secretary then responded, �Bradley�s health plan would replace Medicaid with a $150 monthly voucher, which will not begin to cover the many services required by people with HIV and AIDS.�
    Bradley accused Gore of resorting to �outrageous scare tactics� in criticizing his plan.
    Click for Bill Bradley on other issues.   Source: Boston Globe, p. A21

    Tommy Thompson on Health Care : Jan 26, 2000
    Supports prescription drug savings plan for poor seniors

    I am proposing a Low-Income Prescription Drug Savings Plan that will save seniors $792 a year. Anyone over 65 with an income below 185 percent of poverty will be eligible. The program cuts the prices for the most expensive drugs covered by Medicaid, passes the savings to low-income seniors who pay for medications out of pocket, requires pharmacies to charge no more than the Medicaid reimbursement rate.
    Click for Tommy Thompson on other issues.   Source: State of the State speech

    Al Gore on Abortion : Jan 26, 2000
    Voted against Medicare-funded abortions; but now supports it

    BRADLEY [to Gore]: Is consistency on fundamental issues of principle relevant? I think they are. In Congress you had an 84% right-to-life voting record. This is an issue that requires somebody to know where they stand.
    I respect people who have a different view than I do. I respect your position that you had. People can evolve. But you campaign shouldn�t go around saying that you�ve always been for a woman�s right to choose because the record shows you have not.

    GORE: We basically agree, we have exactly the same position. So if you want to manufacturer a distinction, O.K. I favor woman�s right to choose regardless of the woman�s income. I have always supported a woman�s right to choose. And I support it today.

    BRADLEY: Al, that�s not true. You voted the other way.

    GORE: The exceptions to the general rule that Medicaid should provide funding for abortions constituted virtually the only votes in the House of Representatives during [my years there]. And I wrestled with [those issues].

    Click for Al Gore on other issues.   Source: (X-ref from Bradley) Democrat Debate in Manchester NH

    John McCain on Social Security : Jan 26, 2000
    More believe in Elvis than in getting Social Security check

    In good times, when we have a surplus, we should give the middle income Americans a tax break. They need it. They pay as much as 40 percent of their income in taxes. But at the same time, people are telling me: save Social Security; put some money into Medicare and pay down that debt. And don�t put that burden on future generations of Americans. More young Americans believe Elvis is alive than believe that they�ll ever see a Social Security check.
    Click for John McCain on other issues.   Source: GOP Debate in Manchester NH

    Bill Bradley on Health Care : Jan 17, 2000
    All people on Medicaid should have a primary care physician

    Q: How will your health care plan affect minorities? A: If you�re a Medicaid recipient, 2/3rds of doctors won�t accept you. You go to an emergency room to get the most expensive care. I want to provide a primary care physician for everybody. And 40% of the people in poverty in this country don�t have Medicaid. They�re overwhelmingly African-American & Latino. Under the proposal that I have offered they would have health care and they would be mainstreamed.
    Click for Bill Bradley on other issues.   Source: Democrat Debate in Des Moines, Iowa

    George W. Bush on Health Care : Jan 16, 2000
    Replace 132,000-page Medicare document with senior choice

    As far as the elderly, [their health care is] controlled by a 132,000-page document to determine how to allocate and ration Medicare dollars to the seniors. It is a plan that is inefficient, it is a plan that�s antiquated. And what our government must do is empower our seniors to be able to make choices for themselves and support premiums for the poorest of seniors.
    Click for George W. Bush on other issues.   Source: GOP Debate in Johnston, Iowa

    Steve Forbes on Health Care : Jan 16, 2000
    Replace �gatekeepers� with health care vouchers

    The key is putting patients in charge of health care resources again. There�s no need for all of these 3rd parties, HMO�s, insurers, employers, gate keepers, government bureaucracies that stand in the way. [You should] have your choice of several hundred different health care plans. If you need long-term care [or] prescriptive medicines you can choose a plan that does it. And for those on Medicaid, you should be able to have vouchers so you make the choice, not where the government tells you to go.
    Click for Steve Forbes on other issues.   Source: GOP Debate in Johnston, Iowa

    Alan Keyes on Social Security : Jan 13, 2000
    Supports privatization & Lock-box

    Click for Alan Keyes on other issues.   Source: Vote-Smart.org 2000 NPAT

    John Hagelin on Welfare & Poverty : Jan 13, 2000
    Welfare via block grants; focus on job creation

    Click for John Hagelin on other issues.   Source: Vote-Smart.org 2000 NPAT

    John Hagelin on Social Security : Jan 13, 2000
    More funds for Soc. Sec; invest in stocks; supports Lockbox

    Click for John Hagelin on other issues.   Source: Vote-Smart.org 2000 NPAT

    Howard Phillips on Social Security : Jan 13, 2000
    Keep Congress out of Social Security�s pocket

    Click for Howard Phillips on other issues.   Source: National Political Awareness Test, Project Vote Smart 2000

    John Hagelin on Health Care : Jan 13, 2000
    Cut costs via prevention; allow more Medicare choice

    Hagelin says he �supports preventive health care programs in order to promote health and cut costs by 50% to 70%; and supports financial incentives such as medical savings accounts for Medicare and Medicaid subscribers and vouchers enabling Medicare and Medicaid subscribers to choose any insurance plan or health care provider they desire.�
    Click for John Hagelin on other issues.   Source: Vote-Smart.org 2000 NPAT

    Howard Phillips on Health Care : Jan 13, 2000
    Federal govt out of health care

    Click for Howard Phillips on other issues.   Source: National Political Awareness Test, Project Vote Smart 2000

    Harry Browne on Health Care : Jan 13, 2000
    Get government out of health care & costs will plummet

    Browne agrees that providing health care is not a responsibility of the federal government. He says, �By getting government out of the healthcare industry, healthcare costs will plummet, innovation will increase, and more people will have access to the healthcare they need.� Browne would not support increasing taxes on alcohol and cigarettes to help defer costs of Medicare and Medicaid.
    Click for Harry Browne on other issues.   Source: Vote-Smart.org 2000 NPAT

    Gary Bauer on Welfare & Poverty : Jan 13, 2000
    Pro-block grants; require teen moms to live with parents

    Click for Gary Bauer on other issues.   Source: Vote-Smart.org 2000 NPAT

    Steve Forbes on Health Care : Jan 13, 2000
    Give small-business employees same options as others