homepage logo

No hush-hush deal

By Staff | Jan 29, 2010

To the editor,

There’s been a lot of deliberate and blatant misinformation – on the Internet, in letters to the editor and mass e-mails and such – about my amendment to the Senate health-care legislation that aims to protect the benefits of seniors enrolled in Medicare Advantage plans.

I’ve heard it all from how it was a back-door deal to how it only protects 300,000 seniors in three politically friendly South Florida counties. Of course, that’s wrong.

Fact is, there was no deal and the Medicare Advantage amendment doesn’t apply to just three counties. The amendment protects some 800,000 seniors all across Florida, and not just 300,000 in three counties. It also helps others in states similar to Florida where seniors face especially high health-care costs, like in California and New York.

Further, I brought the amendment up in the Senate Finance Committee’s public meeting last October, at which time it was fully debated and the committee approved it. In other words, there was no hush-hush deal for my vote on the broader health-care bill.

It has been reported that these false assertions trace to Republican lawmakers, including U.S. Sen. Mike Crapo of Idaho, who didn’t respond to a major newspaper’s inquiry about such political rhetoric.

I hope this information helps set the record straight for anyone who is interested in the facts.

Bill Nelson

U.S. Senator – Florida