"Why" Won't 60 Plus Tell Seniors The Truth?

September 30, 2010 10:55 am ET — Fae Jencks

60 Plus is at it again.

Despite numerous calls to take down their deceptive ads aimed at scaring seniors into voting against members of Congress who supported the Affordable Care Act, Hotline On Call reported today that the organization is doubling down on it's attacks. The conservative group 60 Plus Association has now invested more than $1 million in five additional congressional districts to air its false and misleading claims about the new health care law.

60 Plus doesn't seem to realize that changing the names on these cookie-cutter ads doesn't make them any less false. Their attacks earlier this week on Reps. Boccieri (OH-13), Donnelly (IN-2), and Dahlkemper (PA-3) were just as baseless as their attacks on Reps. Carney (PA-10), Bishop (NY-01), Murphy (NY-20), Kind (WI-03), and Kagen (WI-08) are today.

The ads in question, titled "Why," cast doubt on these representatives' support of the "big-government health care bill," musing that "We may never know why [Carney/Bishop/Murphy/Kind/Kagen] supported Pelosi over our seniors." Certainly, this would be a difficult question to answer, were 60 Plus' claims about the law true. Fortunately for our seniors, the new health care law doesn't cut benefits, as 60 Plus suggests, but bolsters them. In fact, the Affordable Care Act closes loopholes for pharmaceutical companies and improves Medicare's coverage of preventative benefits.

Here are just a few of the ways the new health care law helps our seniors:

  • Changes To Medicare Advantage Come With Extra Benefits For All Medicare Enrollees.  FactCheck.org reported: "The CBO has estimated that the move would change the value of the extra benefits Medicare Advantage participants get, but they would not receive fewer benefits than the rest of seniors who aren't on the Advantage plans. The bill does add some extras for Medicare beneficiaries, eliminating copays and deductibles for preventive services, for example." [FactCheck.org, 12/2/09, emphasis added]
  • Health Care Reform Fills The "Doughnut Hole."  According to the Kaiser Family Foundation: "In 2010, Part D enrollees with any spending in the coverage gap will receive a $250 rebate. Beginning in 2011, enrollees with spending in the coverage gap will receive a 50 percent discount on brand-name drugs, provided by the pharmaceutical industry. The law phases in Medicare coverage in the gap for generic drugs beginning in 2011, and for brand-name drugs beginning in 2013. By 2020, Part D enrollees will be responsible for 25 percent of the cost of both brands and generics in the gap, down from 100 percent in 2010." [Kaiser Family Foundation, accessed 8/25/10]
  • Health Care Reform Improves Medicare's Coverage Of Preventative Benefits.  According to the Kaiser Family Foundation: "Beginning in 2011, no coinsurance or deductibles will be charged in traditional Medicare for preventive services that are rated A or B by the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF). Medicare will cover a free annual comprehensive wellness visit and personalized prevention plan." [Kaiser Family Foundation, accessed 8/25/10]

It's clear that the question is not why these congressmen and women supported the Affordable Care Act. The question is: why wouldn't they?

You can check out our full fact check of 60 Plus' "Why" HERE, and look at our fact checks of other 60 Plus ads HERE