Opinion

Time for candidates to say where they stand

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To the Editor;
In just a few months, newly elected state and federal leaders will take office. Research just completed by AARP – the largest non-profit, non-partisan social membership organization both in Maine and in the U.S. – has confirmed that especially for older Mainers, the next two years will be hugely important to their future.

In a survey entitled “Insight From Maine’s Voters Age 50+,” respondents overwhelmingly report that protecting retirement security (especially Social Security), access to affordable healthcare (especially Medicare) and preserving the ability to age independently are among the most important considerations in the upcoming election.

The survey shows that more than three out of four older Mainers believe that controlling the cost of prescription drugs and holding drug companies accountable for skyrocketing prices are crucial objectives. More than nine of every 10 believe that each candidate’s position on helping older Mainers live independently will impact how we vote.

In addition when asked if the elections for governor, U.S. Senate and Congress were held today, survey respondents who reported being undecided ranged from 12-16 percent across the races. Such high percentages of undecided voters should send a strong signal to all candidates to be transparent on their positions.

Mainers over 50 are the biggest voting bloc in the state, and we urge all candidates for state and federal offices to pay close attention to this important new data and to what older Mainers are saying. It’s time for the candidates to tell us where they stand on these critical issues. To find out more go to www.aarp.org/me.

Rich Livingston
AARP Maine volunteer state president
Biddeford

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