News Release

· Behind Medicare Problems · DOD Funds: No One Accountable? · Impact of Tax Cuts

CLAUDIA FEGAN, MD
Co-author of the book Universal Health Care: What the United States Can Learn from the Canadian Experience, Fegan is past president of Physicians for a National Health Program. She said today: “The current problem with Medicare Part D is unfortunate because some of us believe that the way it was designed virtually ensured that it would undermine Medicare. If Part D were just an added benefit of Medicare, it would be simple; but as it is, it is a cruel hoax on the elderly, one of our most vulnerable populations. It was designed to provide a windfall for the HMOs. It also provides a windfall for the drug companies by preventing the government from negotiating for lower drug prices for Medicare recipients, the way the Veterans Administration does.” Hellander is executive director of Physicians for a National Health Program.
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LAWRENCE J. KORB
KWAI CHAN
Korb and Chan are co-authors of a new report titled “Financial Management in the Department of Defense: No One is Accountable,” to be released tomorrow by Business Leaders for Sensible Priorities. Korb is former assistant secretary of defense under Ronald Reagan; Chan is the former assistant inspector general with the Environmental Protection Agency and the former issue area director in the National Security and International Affairs Division in the Government Accountability Office. They will be among the participants in a phone conference call Thursday, May 11 at noon EST; to participate, call: (800) 214-0694, pass code: 597469.
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HEATHER BOUSHEY
Boushey is an economist with the Center for Economic and Policy Research. She said today: “The current proposal will cut taxes by nearly $70 billion over the next five years. These tax cuts will extend the reduction of capital gains taxes — that is, taxes on assets and other unearned income — through 2010. They also increase the exemption to the Alternative Minimum Tax — a tax specifically designed to ensure that wealthier Americans pay their fair share. Both of these tax cuts will disproportionately benefit the wealthiest families. The Tax Policy Center estimates that the extension of the capital gains tax cut alone will provide the average family with annual income of more than $1 million a tax cut of over $32,000, which is more than the annual earnings of the median male worker.”
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For more information, contact at the Institute for Public Accuracy:
Sam Husseini, (202) 347-0020; or David Zupan, (541) 484-9167