Politics

GOP says Medicare financed health-care brochure is propaganda

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Alex Pappas
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      Alex Pappas

      Alex Pappas is a Washington D.C.-based political reporter for The Daily Caller. He has also written for The Washington Examiner and the Mobile Press-Register. Pappas is a graduate of The University of the South in Sewanee, Tenn., where he was editor-in-chief of The Sewanee Purple. While in college, he did internships at NBC's Meet the Press and the White House. He grew up in Mobile, Ala., where he graduated from St. Paul's Episcopal School. He and his wife live on Capitol Hill.

Republicans say a new health-care brochure for seniors financed with Medicare funds looks more like taxpayer-funded propaganda than straight information.

Republican leader Mitch McConnell took to the Senate floor Tuesday to call the flyer an “outrage.” A copy of the brochure can be viewed here.

He said the leaflet from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (part of the Department Health and Human Services) tells seniors what the health care bill means for them, but much of it directly contradicts what the Obama administration’s own experts have said about the law. “This is nothing short of government propaganda, paid for by the taxpayer,” McConnell said.

“The administration’s own actuary at the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services says seniors who use Medicare Advantage will lose benefits as a result of this bill. Yet the flyer they’re putting out says nothing about this. Instead, it implies nothing will change for these seniors,” he said.

McConnell said “perhaps most egregious is the claim that a bill which cuts Medicare by half a trillion dollars will actually ‘preserve and strengthen’ Medicare.”

The Daily Caller was unable to obtain information on how much the mailers cost.

Reached for comment, Marilyn Tavenner, the acting administrator of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, said in a release that an information brochure is necessary because “unfortunately new opportunities for Medicare beneficiaries also bring new opportunities for scam artists to try and defraud seniors.”

“It’s important that our Medicare beneficiaries get facts about this important new law timely so they can learn what stays the same and what will change and improve in terms of their benefits,” Tavenner said.

But Rep. Dave Camp, the ranking member of Ways and Means, said in a statement that, “the Obama Administration has unleashed a public relations campaign” because “the vast majority of Americans, especially seniors, are opposed to their health overhaul.”

Camp’s release sought to discredit the “myths” or “misleading statements” the brochure claims like:

  • The new health care law “will provide you and your family with greater savings and increased quality health care.”
  • Because of the new health law “you will see new benefits and cost savings” and “Medicare will continue to cover your health costs the way it always has.”
  • “The new law creates a program to preserve [employer-based retiree health plans] and help people who retire before age 65 get the affordable care they need.”
  • “The new law provides affordable health insurance through a transitional high-risk pool program for people without insurance due to a pre-existing condition.”
  • “More Affordable Prescription Drugs”
  • “Your choice of doctor will be preserved.”

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  • erick1740

    At least as the seniors lose their coverage they will have a nice pamphlet to point to and deny that it is happening.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Bridget-Mary-Page/509748771 Bridget Mary Page

    Where’s your evidence that it’s NOT propaganda? These are the real regressive policies that will turn our medical and health care industry into the failed socialized-Ponzi-scheme of every other socialist country. That’s all the evidence you need, just look the hell around you.

  • doncicciofitipaldi

    Ohhhhh you Republican Regressives crack me up once agin. Simply because you disagree with what the the brochure sais, desn’t mean it’s “propaganda”. As you can see from the article, the counter “arguments” from the Repblicans are the same old OPINIONS they have about the bill and what they think will happen.

    Not everything you disagree with is “propaganda” Mr. Fossil McConnell.

    • thephranc

      If it is filled with lies it is propaganda. And it does lie. But we all know you are so dishonest you will ignore the lies. It’s what trolls like you do. And it is why you have no integrity and no credibility.

    • recovered dem

      It is filled with lies propaganda! You are just too blind or ignorant to see what is going to happen with this monstrosity Obamacare. Do a little research before you believe what Obama and the dems have been trying to sell, or you one the ones who suck off taxpayers. Or, are you one of those trolls in the white house basement paid to post such crap.

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  • adamincalifornia

    3rd rule of Community Organizing:

    When out of power, lie about what people don’t have.

    When in power, lie about what people do have.

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