Campaign 2010

May 12, 2006

Florida State Sen. Ron Klein to Deliver Democratic Radio Address

DCCC Press

May 12, 2006

Florida State Sen. Ron Klein to Deliver Democratic Radio Address

(Washington, D.C.) – Florida State Senator Ron Klein, who is running to unseat Rep. Clay Shaw in Florida’s 22nd congressional district, delivered the Democratic Radio Address this Saturday. With a solid reputation as a champion for Florida seniors, Klein spoke to a national audience about the failed Medicare prescription drug legislation, in particular the hidden monthly fee known as the “privatization tax.” The privatization tax will become a reality for millions of seniors who have not signed up for the confusing prescription drug plan after Monday, May 15th.

WHO: Florida State Senator Ron Klein

WHAT: Weekly Democratic Radio Address

WHEN: Saturday, May 13, 2006 (at various times across the country)

WHERE: Major radio networks, including ABC, AP, AURN, CBS, CNN, C-SPAN, NPR, American Forces Radio, Voice of America, BBC, CBC, and Australian Broadcasting Corporation

  • Listen to the Address.

    Below is a transcript of his remarks:

    State Senator Ron Klein
    National Radio Address
    “Time for Common Sense Leadership in Washington”

    “Time for Common Sense Leadership in Washington”

    This is State Senator Ron Klein from Florida.

    Seniors in Florida and all over the country have spent the last several months grappling with the new prescription drug law.

    The law, written by President Bush, Congressional Republicans, and the Big Drug Companies.

    With the sign up deadline looming on Monday, millions of American seniors will be forced to pay a penalty for not signing up for the program.

    The Republican Congress’ prescription drug program is wrong for Florida and wrong for our nation’s seniors. I am running for Congress because Floridians deserve a new direction from my opponent’s leadership on this and other legislation that has put special interests first and left Florida families behind.

    While we must help older Americans with the cost of prescription drugs, under this plan, millions are confused and are having a tough time navigating the options and details buried in the fine print of this program.

    Many seniors don’t know that if they spend between $2,250 and $5,100 per year on drugs, they’ll get NO help at all with their monthly premiums.

    In my home state of Florida, as many as 160,000 seniors may lose coverage under this program, and over 315,000 seniors could end up paying even more.

    The hidden fees are not the only dirty little secret the architects of the Medicare law don’t want you to know about. The new prescription drug law is little more than a legislative pay off to the pharmaceutical industry and HMOs. In addition to the program begin confusing and expensive, it includes the risk of losing coverage and even forbids Medicare from negotiating with the drug companies to get the lowest possible prices for seniors.

    Just last year you’ll remember that President Bush announced his plan to privatize Social Security.

    His ill-conceived plan for private accounts will cost taxpayers hundreds of billions of dollars. Just to remind you, this is all from the same failed economic leadership that has increased our nation’s debt to more than eight trillion dollars.

    The President’s risky plan to privatize Social Security cuts benefits for the middle class. It even limits benefits for the children who lose their parents and eliminates benefits to surviving spouses who could suddenly find themselves living alone.

    In other words, their Social Security plan is just like their Medicare prescription drug plan – written to benefit the big special interests groups, inadequate, and confusing.

    We badly need a new direction in this country. We can start by electing a Congress that is willing to stand up to the powerful special interests. We deserve a Congress willing to fight for America’s middle class and do the right thing - actually help people.

    As a State Senator, I have worked hard to get affordable prescription drugs and a health care plan that makes sense to seniors - because you shouldn’t need a PhD to figure out the new prescription drug law.

    As a candidate for Congress, I pledge to fight the special interests and stand up for senior citizens. When I get to Washington, I will work to fix the prescription drug law so that is easy to understand, accessible to everyone, and provides real savings for you and your family.

    I will take a common sense approach to the decisions that come across my desk and I will stand up for Florida seniors.

    This is State Senator Ron Klein of Florida. Thanks for listening.