November 02, 2012

Remember to Vote on November 6th!

Election Day – Tuesday, November 6 – is now just four days away. “I want to thank all of our activists who have been working tirelessly, planning ahead for months,” said Barbara J. Easterling, President of the Alliance. “Now is not the time to let up. We must decide if we want to elect a President who represents all of us, or just a select few.”

Ms. Easterling continued, “Please make sure to vote this Tuesday if you have not already taken advantage of early voting. We need all hands on deck to make sure that we have the votes of everyone who supports President Barack Obama and other Alliance-endorsed candidates. For everyone – but especially if you live in a swing state like Ohio, Colorado, Florida, Virginia, Iowa, Nevada, Wisconsin, North Carolina, New Hampshire, or Pennsylvania: we are relying on you. President Obama and Vice President Joe Biden deserve to be re-elected, because they will keep Social Security and Medicare from being privatized and turned over to Wall Street and the big insurance companies.”

Ms. Easterling added, “Besides the race for President, key statewide races in states such as Massachusetts, Indiana, Connecticut, Montana, Nevada, and Wisconsin will determine who controls the U.S. Senate. And in the House of Representatives, Republicans look to make their majority more comfortable.”

In case there are long lines on Tuesday, bring a book, water, a snack, a chair – and your friends and neighbors. Above all else, don’t leave until you’ve made sure that your own vote is counted!” Ms. Easterling concluded.

For a map with Alliance-endorsed candidates, go to For a reminder of what the Paul Ryan budget, endorsed by Mitt Romney, would mean for seniors, Social Security, and Medicare, go to

Biden Video Captures the Message

There is now a 2-minute campaign video of Vice President Biden speaking specifically about seniors issues. It contrasts President Obama and Vice President Biden with Mr. Romney and Rep. Ryan on Medicare, Social Security, and other issues. Biden notes that the Romney-Ryan Medicare plan would cost seniors tens of thousands of dollars out-of-pocket. Click here to watch:
Voter Protection: The Effect of Hurricane Sandy

With election officials scrambling to prepare polling places pummeled by Hurricane Sandy, New Jersey Lt. Gov. Kim Guadagno said yesterday that the state would deploy military trucks to serve as makeshift polling places and extend the deadline for requesting mail-in ballots. A spokesman for Guadagno said that voters had until the end of business Thursday to request mail-in ballots, and that they could be returned by 8 p.m. on Election Day. The previous deadline had passed last Tuesday. For more information, and details about other states affected by the hurricane, go to “Hurricane Sandy was a terrible tragedy,” said Ruben Burks, Secretary-Treasurer of the Alliance. “Our hearts go out to all who have suffered the loss of loved ones, and to those who have lost their homes. Let’s contain the damage and not let it affect the elections.”

Hurricane Sandy may not be the only obstacle. “If you become aware of any voting intimidation, irregularities or have any problems, please call 1-866-OUR VOTE,” said Edward F. Coyle, Executive Director of the Alliance. “That is the number for the toll-free nationwide Election Protection Hotline, a joint project of a coalition of groups, including the AFL-CIO and the Alliance, promoting voting rights.” If you have a voting problem, you can also ask to speak with the chief election official or a voting rights volunteer at the polls. For more information on voter protection, please visit The site includes information on how new voter identification laws apply to you and your state.

Kaiser Study Gives Clues to what is on Voters’ Minds

The Kaiser Family Foundation’s October Health Tracking Poll ( finds, one week before the presidential election, the economy remains the primary concern on voters’ minds nationally, but health policy issues are also in the mix. The Kaiser Foundation is a health-care policy group based in California.

The study estimated that a Medicare plan similar to Mr. Romney’s proposal would likely result in higher premiums for 59% of Medicare beneficiaries. It found that for Democratic voters, Medicare (43%), Medicaid (43%), and the Affordable Care Act (41%) all share the top spot as the most important issue, along with the economy.

The economy is the winner (67%) for Republican voters, with the most important health issue, the Affordable Care Act (49%), ranking third behind the deficit (58%).

On Medicare, senior voters are the most likely to oppose switching to vouchers: 72 percent prefer keeping Medicare as is, compared to 58 percent of likely voters under 65. “That makes sense, since the Congressional Budget Office projects that new beneficiaries could pay more than $5,900 more per year in out-of-pocket costs by 2050 if we go to vouchers,” said Mr. Coyle.

Florida Alliance Goes International

In Tampa yesterday, Florida Alliance members took part in a discussion with eleven international journalists participating in the East-West Center’s upcoming 2012 U.S. Presidential Election Reporting Seminar. The East-West Center, headquartered in Honolulu, promotes better relations and understanding among the people and nations of the U.S., Asia, and the Pacific. FLARA guests included State President Tony Fransetta, Barbara Phillipi, Tony Kiwak, Tom Snover, Bob Wagner, Georgina Wagner, Ray Davis, Carolyn Davis, David Bernstein, and Marilyn Warner.

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