September 1st, 2009
12:22 PM ET
13 years ago

RNC ad calls for 'Seniors' Bill of Rights'

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/images/09/01/art.michaelsteelernc.0901.gi.jpg caption="The RNC continued its push to reach out to senior citizens on Tuesday with a new television ad."] WASHINGTON (CNN) - The Republican National Committee is intensifying its push to reach seniors skeptical of President Obama's health care proposal, releasing a new television ad Tuesday that targets the powerful voter bloc.

In the one-minute ad, RNC Chairman Michael Steele outlines the RNC's new "Seniors' Bill of Rights" - six policies the party says will serve as "protections" for senior citizens.

"When you disagree with Washington, how come they act like it's your problem?" Steele says. "That's what the Democrats have done with health care. They say you're the problem."

"How about a different way? A focus on things we can all agree on? I'm Michael Steele, Chairman of the Republican Party. Join us in supporting a new Seniors' Bill of Rights."

The GOP's plan repeats recent Republican calls for zero cuts to Medicare, a rule barring health care rationing based on age, and a measure that would prevent the government from playing any role in end-of-life care.

The White House has said any cuts to Medicare would target government waste, and would not affect the level of care for seniors, and independent fact-checking organizations have said claims that the proposed plan includes any provision for rationing are inaccurate.

The measure that would help fund end-of-life counseling - private sessions where doctors would advise patients on living wills and other related matters - drew strong support from the American Medical Association, but is now likely to be dropped from the final bill.

The DNC called the new ad a "scare tactic built on a foundation of lies."

"Republicans have decided that they have no other choice when it comes to blocking health insurance reform than to lie to the American people and try to scare seniors – all in their admitted effort to 'break' the President on this issue and 'kill' reform for political gain," said Democratic National Committee spokesman Brad Woodhouse.

"...Republicans have substituted scare tactics for substance and lies for the truth. And now, the very Republicans who opposed the creation of Social Security and tried to dismantle it less than four years ago – and the same Republicans who have worked against Medicare since its inception – are now standing up for seniors?"

The ad is slated to run across certain national cable networks and throughout Florida.


Filed under: Ads • Health care • Michael Steele • RNC
soundoff (85 Responses)
  1. Keeth in California

    Senior's Bill of Rights? Where was this during the Republican years? Why now the sudden interest in the well-being of seniors? Why not take the opportunity to fix Medicare and Social Security when you had the chance? Privatizing part of Social Security was not a fix in the best interests of the people, it was only in the best interests of profit for Wall Street. This is just a sham. Pure, unadulterated political pandering. An absolute farce.

    September 1, 2009 01:48 pm at 1:48 pm |
  2. vette gal

    As a senior citizen who is in favor of a national health plan, I am sick to death of the republicans targeting senior citizens who for the most part, unfortunately, are not informed about this subject and who follow the republicans like sheep led to water. When are the two parties going to quit lying to the general populace and start leading our nation instead of taking it further into the gutter just to get their own private agendas in place.

    September 1, 2009 01:52 pm at 1:52 pm |
  3. Sam Sixpack

    As Dr. Ezekiel Emanuel, Obama's Special Advisor for Health Policy, puts it, "services provided to individuals who are irreversibly prevented from being or becoming participating citizens are not basic and should not be guaranteed. An obvious example is not guaranteeing health services to patients with dementia."

    September 1, 2009 01:55 pm at 1:55 pm |
  4. jeremy.....Dallas...Texas

    oh my God. Do I have to wait until am 65yrs to be assured of healthcare? COME ON GUYS! I PAY MY TAXES NOW NOT THEN. HEALTHCARE SHOULD BE BILL OF RIGHTS TO EVERYONE AND NOT ONLY TO SENIORS. STOP THIS DESCRIMINATION BY AGE. WE ALL NEED GOOD HEALTH. SS CAN WAIT BUT NOT HEALTHCARE.

    September 1, 2009 01:55 pm at 1:55 pm |
  5. Jefe

    So let me get this straight:

    1) The Republican Party is putting themselves up as the Pro-Socialism, Pro-Government-Waste Party (not wanting cuts in government waste within the Socialist Medicare program)

    2) They want to bar healthcare rationing based on age, which is already barred. Maybe next they'll want to pass a law requiring that when 2 is added to 2, it equals 4.

    3) They want to make sure that seniors are on their own when it comes to living wills and other planning, so that the government can take control of assets when a person passes away naturally.

    Imagine if the Dems proposed a "Bill of Rights" protecting those earning less than $1M/year from being required to serve 2 years as child sex slaves to Republican Senators. That's the equivalent.

    September 1, 2009 01:56 pm at 1:56 pm |
  6. S M R

    The GOP is very good at flipflopping. They were against Social Security and Medicare and now they are the saviors? I think not.

    September 1, 2009 01:56 pm at 1:56 pm |
  7. Dutch/Bad Newz, VA

    Michael Steele is an idiot and the commercial is a bunch of hype. Seniors have Medicare due democrats not republicans. Get that through your thick skull then come to talk to me.

    September 1, 2009 01:56 pm at 1:56 pm |
  8. Allison

    I don't think "Seniors" are going to be fooled by the GOP. They're smarter than what Republicans give them credit for. I hope they all reflect on the past eight years and are not led to slaughter by Republicans.

    September 1, 2009 01:57 pm at 1:57 pm |
  9. T Mckinley

    Hypocrisy! Outright hypocrisy!

    If the Republicans were honest with the American people, they would be openly sponsering a health care insurance executive's "bill of rights."

    The right to charge as much as they want, so they can increase the size of their executive compensation packages.

    September 1, 2009 01:58 pm at 1:58 pm |
  10. Kelby In Houston, Texas

    A seniors bill of rights?!?! So the RNC believes that Senior citizens should have more or fewer rights than I have? Or are they doing this to fuel fears.
    They created this lie about senior citizens facing death panels. And now it looks like the RNC is going to step in and protect the senior citizens from the lie they created.
    Just like the town hall meetings. Repubs, big pharma and the health insurance lobby create these angry mobs and when people point out that they are, in fact, an angry mob, The repubs come in and defend them and call them citizens or constituents.
    That is a 2 faced move. Your actions and intentions are obvious to most.

    September 1, 2009 01:58 pm at 1:58 pm |
  11. Dave

    Come on Dem's, start insulting seniors again and calling them an "angry mob" or "Astroturfers" and tools of the Republican party.

    You know that you have lost the debate on having our Government take over our Health Care system so time to turn to the only tactic you know how to use. Instead of working with Republicans to pass legislation fixing the problems we have with Heath Insurance coverage, focus on insulting Americans. Way to go Dem's

    September 1, 2009 02:00 pm at 2:00 pm |
  12. NH Independent

    Liberals are fighting a loosing battle........heatlhcare reform is as dead as Teddy........

    September 1, 2009 02:00 pm at 2:00 pm |
  13. The Lonely Libertarian of Liverpool NY

    The GOP the party that will say anything to get a vote. Something they learned from the Democrats.

    September 1, 2009 02:00 pm at 2:00 pm |
  14. Rob in Detroit Mi.

    IF you are a senior and believe,anything the RNC has to say well you deserve whatr happens.

    September 1, 2009 02:00 pm at 2:00 pm |
  15. T Mckinley

    Senior's "bill of rights" my arse. The only "rights" that these Republicans are fighting for, is the "rights" of health care insurance and big pharma executives to continue to increase the size of their executive compenstion packages by overcharging the American people.

    September 1, 2009 02:01 pm at 2:01 pm |
  16. Gary

    If I remember correctly, Medicare & Medicaid are both products of former President Johnson's administration. At that time too, it was called "socialism". The GOP opposed that program at that time but it looks like the GOP is now the strongest defender of a Democrat "socialist" program.

    September 1, 2009 02:02 pm at 2:02 pm |
  17. notfooledbydistractions

    It's all just lip service. the republicans didn't vote for medicare and social security, and they've been battling it ever since – why would anyone with live brain cells trust what they're saying now? Actions speak louder than words, too bad michael steele thinks we're all as dumb as he is. that's his first mistake.

    September 1, 2009 02:06 pm at 2:06 pm |
  18. Sniffit

    This nonsense from the party who, under Newtered Gingrich in 1994 when they took control of Congress, cheered wildly when Newtered annouced that the GOP would let Medicare/caid "wither on the vine."

    Is irony just too complicated for these dolts or what?

    September 1, 2009 02:07 pm at 2:07 pm |
  19. Duck Fallas

    Steel is a token tool. Shame on him.

    When are the "seniors" going to band together and stand up against governmet interference by rejecting Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Security?

    September 1, 2009 02:08 pm at 2:08 pm |
  20. Ken

    That's right seniors. THINK! Which party has consistently benefitted seniors' and defended them from the harmful policies proposed by the 'other' party...for well obver 70 years now! THINK! The 'other' party is counting on you being weak and dumb; they expect you to fall for the same empty-minded fearmongering that the rest of the country is falling for....fall for their little trinkets and baubles....a seniors bill of rights? Will your generation have successfully fought foreign rightwing powers, in the form of the Nazis and communism, only to fall prey to our homegrown version of the taliban?

    September 1, 2009 02:08 pm at 2:08 pm |
  21. Paul

    Message to RNC. There is no Healthcare bill yet. Work together with the DNC and come with something you both can agree upon that will fix the broken Healthcare system in The USA.

    September 1, 2009 02:08 pm at 2:08 pm |
  22. T Mckinley

    This so-called "Senior's bill of rights" is nothing but a hypocritical tactic being used by Republicans to block health care reform.

    The only "rights" these people are working for, is the "rights" of health care insurance and big pharma executives to increase the size of their executive compensation packages by continuing to allow them to raise the cost of health care insurance whenever they want to.

    September 1, 2009 02:08 pm at 2:08 pm |
  23. Joe, Georgia

    Lies, lies and more lies. This appears to be all that is left of the Republican Party. What has happened to the morals of the leaders of this Party that they will spend millions of dollars to spread information they no to be false? I don't agree with everything that is being proposed in the health care bills that are before Congress, but I do know that I don't need to be concerned about anything that is mentioned in this ad, because it's just a bunch of trumped up scare tactics spreading false information.

    September 1, 2009 02:08 pm at 2:08 pm |
  24. Sniffit

    "A focus on things we can all agree on?"

    Seeing as how none of the things the GOP has fabricated and is pretending to save the elderly population from are actually contained in any of the proposed draft bills, we've already reached agreement, so you can crawl back into your land of daydreams and cartoons Mushmouth.

    September 1, 2009 02:09 pm at 2:09 pm |
  25. True Americans

    Does Steele know a black guy talking to them is S-C-A-R-Y to old people who are infirm enough to believe this tripe

    September 1, 2009 02:09 pm at 2:09 pm |
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