AARP Eye Center
Large Majorities of Older Voters Across Party Lines Oppose the Age Tax,
Removal of Pre-existing Condition Protections, Medicare and Medicaid Cuts
June 22, 2017 - DES MOINES, IA — AARP Iowa today released new survey data highlighting the deep divide between Americans and Washington politicians over health care policies important to older Americans.
“Health care is a deeply personal issue that has a real and immediate impact on American families across the political spectrum. These survey findings are very clear – people don’t support legislation that would mean higher costs and less coverage for older Americans,” said Kent Sovern, AARP Iowa State Director. “AARP urges Senator Chuck Grassley and Senator Joni Ernst to oppose any bill that would raise premiums, price people with pre-existing conditions out of coverage, weaken Medicare, and make cuts to Medicaid that would reduce services for those most in need.”
More details from the survey are below:
• The Age Tax: 91% of Iowa voters age 50+ oppose charging older Americans five times more than others for their healthcare plan while just 7% support the drastic cost increase. The proportion of age 50+ voters who oppose the age tax includes 83% of Republicans, 93% of Independents, and 96% of Democrats.
• Medicare Cuts: 88% of Iowa voters age 50+ oppose cutting funding for Medicare and increasing premiums for current and future seniors, while just 9% support the harmful cuts. The proportion of age 50+ voters who oppose Medicare cuts includes 80% of Republicans, 92% of Independents, and 93% of Democrats.
• Removal of Pre-existing Condition Protections: 82% of Iowa voters age 50+ oppose charging people with pre-existing conditions more for their coverage, while just 9% support doing so. The proportion of age 50+ voters who oppose removal of this protection includes 63% of Republicans, 89% of Independents, and 94% of Democrats.
• Tax Breaks for Drug and Insurance Companies: 82% of Iowa voters age 50+ oppose providing tax breaks for insurance and drug companies, while just 13% support such breaks. The proportion of age 50+ voters who oppose tax breaks for big drug and insurance companies includes 76% of Republicans, 86% of Independents, and 86% of Democrats.
• Medicaid Funding Cuts: 79% of Iowa voters age 50+ oppose cutting funding for Medicaid, while just 18% support the harmful cuts. The proportion of age 50+ voters who oppose Medicaid cuts includes 66% of Republicans, 85% of Independents, and 87% of Democrats.
Methodology: AARP commissioned a telephone survey among 603 likely voters age 50+ in Iowa. The sample utilized an age-targeted registered voter landline and cell phone list who were contacted between June 2 and June 13, 2017. The data were weighted by age, gender, race/ethnicity and geographic region and are generalizeable to registered voters in Iowa age 50+. The survey has a margin of sampling error of ±4 percent. The survey annotation will be made available at www.aarp.org/2017healthcaresurvey.