The Democratic Platform: A Guide-at-a-Glance for 50+ Voters

Delegates at the 2012 Democratic National Convention in Charlotte, N.C., went on record today as committed to keeping the “promise” of Social Security and Medicare for older Americans. But their 2012 platform is short on details of their own plans to maintain the financial strength of both programs.

The Democratic Party’s 40-page platform, released last night, touches on the major issues of importance to older Americans. Here are highlights (also read the Election 2012 guide to the GOP platform):

Medicare

  • Protect the health insurance program for older Americans, a “sacred compact with our seniors.”
  • Oppose efforts “to privatize or voucherize Medicare.” The platform pledges that “we will not ask seniors to pay thousands of dollars more every year while they watch the value of their Medicare benefits evaporate.”
  • Build on the 2010 Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, which the platform says is strengthening Medicare “by adding new benefits, fighting fraud, and improving care for patients” as well as “closing the gap in prescription drug coverage known as the ‘doughnut hole.’”

Social Security

  • Find “a solution to protect Social Security for future generations,” because, the platform says, “every American deserves a secure, healthy, and dignified retirement.”
  • Block efforts “to subject Americans’ guaranteed retirement income to the whims of the stock market.”
  • Does not provide details of party’s approach to strengthening Social Security.

Retirement Security

  • Make it easier for Americans “to save on their own for retirement and prepare for unforeseen expenses by participating in retirement accounts at work.”
  • Does not provide details of plan.

-Susan Milligan

What do you think about the Democratic platform? Join the convention discussion.