50+ Voters: Some Revelations From the Exit Polls

Exit poll data is providing some significant insights into Tuesday’s election, in which President Barack Obama won a second term – and the role that voters 50 and older, who amount to nearly half of the electorate, played in the outcome. An AARP analysis of the exit poll data shows that while the 50+ vote went to GOP candidate Mitt Romney by 53-46 percent, older voters played an important role in Obama’s decisive near-sweep of battleground states. See also: State-by-state breakdowns of the 50+ …

Obama Challenges: Medicare, Social Security, Health Care Law

Same president. Same Republican control of the U.S. House. Same Democratic control of the U.S. Senate. But that doesn’t mean that issues especially important to voters 50 and older will stay the same. With the nation’s looming fiscal problems, Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid could face changes. And President Obama’s signature accomplishment – the Affordable Care Act – now faces the implementation phase (instead of a prospective battle over repealing it had Republican Mitt Romney had been elected). Medicare and …

President’s Win Is Reprieve for ‘Obamacare’

By Jay Hancock, Staff Writer, Kaiser Health News President Barack Obama’s victory cements the Affordable Care Act, expanding coverage to millions but leaving weighty questions about how to pay for it and other care to be delivered to an increasingly unhealthy, aging population. “The re-election of Obama and the Democrats holding the Senate will solidify the law in American history,” said Len Nichols, a health economist at George Mason University who supports what both sides have come to call Obamacare. …

In Missouri, McCaskill Defeats Akin to Win Re-Election

Democratic Senator Claire McCaskill, written off just months ago as a likely loser in her Missouri re-election race, has won a trip back to Washington - and she has 50- to 64-year-old voters, the state’s biggest voter group by age, in part to thank for it. McCaskill, who was dragging in polls early this summer, was expected to lose the seat to a Republican. But when GOP nominee Todd Akin made controversial comments about abortion and rape victims, McCaskill’s numbers began …

Revisiting the Political Playbook on Medicare

It was once accepted conventional wisdom in politics that messing with federal retirement programs would sink a candidate with older voters. Want to win retiree-rich Florida? Then just attack your opponent as a threat to Social Security or Medicare or both. During the 1992 Democratic presidential primary, Bill Clinton took one little paragraph from Paul Tsongas’ treatise, “A Call to Economic Arms,” in which his rival floated the idea of a 1 percent reduction in cost-of-living adjustments for Social Security. …

How the Health Law Might Be Changed by the Next President

By Mary Agnes Carey, Staff Writer, Kaiser Health News On the presidential campaign trail, Republican Mitt Romney has repeatedly called for repeal of the 2010 health law and President Barack Obama has vowed to implement it. Yet both men could face obstacles: Romney may be stymied by the lack of a majority in Congress to do his will and Obama could be forced by fiscal concerns or public opinion to revamp parts of the law. Here is a look at …