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Congressman Pallone Celebrates 47th Anniversary of Medicare Being Signed into Law

July 30, 2012
Press Release

LONG BRANCH, NJ – Congressman Frank Pallone, Jr. (NJ-06), Senior Democrat on the House Energy & Commerce Health Subcommittee, today visited the Long Branch Senior Center to mark Medicare’s 47th anniversary. Medicare was signed into law by President Lyndon Johnson on July 30, 1965 in Independence, Missouri. Thanks to Medicare, virtually all Americans 65 and older have health care coverage and Medicare has increased both seniors’ health and economic security.

Medicare provides comprehensive health care coverage to 48 million Americans, including 40 million seniors and 8 million people under 65 with disabilities. The Affordable Care Act, authored by Congressman Pallone in the House and enacted in 2010, strengthened Medicare by extending its solvency by eight years, through 2024, and improved its benefits.  Specifically, the Affordable Care Act provides Medicare beneficiaries with more preventive services at no cost to them, and closes the Medicare Part D ‘Donut Hole’ by 2020.

“Today we celebrate Medicare’s success providing seniors and people with disabilities with health care security for the past 47 years,” said Pallone. “Medicare remains one of the Democrat’s greatest achievements, and I will fight to protect it for future generations.”

In 2011 and 2012 House Republicans passed budgets that would end the Medicare guarantee and turn Medicare into a voucher system. The GOP voucher would grow more slowly than health care costs.  As a result, according to CBO, the GOP plan would increase seniors’ health care costs by thousands of dollars a year.  

“I strongly reject and voted against Republican proposals to turn Medicare into a voucher system, which would end the Medicare guarantee and drive up health care costs for seniors. We must instead work together to strengthen Medicare, as we recently did through the Affordable Care Act,” Pallone added.


Ray Zaccaro