Baby boomers may want to rethink their membership to AARP. Anyone born before 1962 who has turned 50 or older can pay a low fee and enroll with AARP. One of the primary benefits of membership is access to insurance policies targeted to older Americans; one such policy is for Medicare “gap” insurance. This insurance, also called “Medigap” insurance, is designed to help fill in when Medicare coverage lacks.
AARP has been given an exemption by the federal government, in exchange for promoting Obama’s healthcare reform. The exemption allows AARP to increase the rates for Medigap insurance policies without rate reviews. Most Medigap health care insurance providers will be subject to rate hike increase reviews and will have to justify the rate increase. AARP will be able to increase its rates without justification, meaning seniors may have to pay inordinate rates that line the pockets of AARP.
This is a blatant conflict of interest. AARP, disregarding the concerns expressed by a majority of their members about the long-term sustainability of Obamacare’s ability to maintain its Medicare coverage, (Kaiser, 2012) overtly promoted Obama’s health care reform act because it stands to gain billions in profits on the Medigap policies.
Various political watch dog groups, including The American Enterprise Institute (AEI), Let Freedom Ring and Americans for Limited Government, are trying to gain additional information about AARP’s involvement with Obamacare. Let Freedom Ring and Judicial Watch have filed a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request with the Department of Human Services to try to collect pertinent information. It has become clear that only certain special interest groups have been given the waivers and kickbacks (including the AARP) which are currently being granted through an unelected official executive branch office.
All Americans – no matter what their age – deserve an answer to this apparent conflict of interest between AARP and the White House. Full disclosure – transparency – which has been a hallmark of President Obama’s campaign and presidency, is needed to determine the extent of corruption AARP has embarked upon in return for billions of dollars in gap insurance policy cost hikes.