New Hampshire Republican State Committee

For Immediate Release

Friday, May 5, 2006

Contact: Wayne Semprini 603-225-9341

Concord, NH:  As Jim Craig and Maryland Congressman Steny Hoyer talk to seniors in Manchester about the impending enrollment deadline for the new prescription drug benefit to Medicare, Republican State Committee Chairman Wayne Semprini applauded the efforts of Congressman Jeb Bradley to take action and act in the best interests of New Hampshire seniors to improve Medicare Part D.

"As the enrollment deadline approaches, Jeb Bradley continues to advocate for additional flexibility for New Hampshire seniors," said Semprini. "First and foremost, New Hampshire seniors are better off now that Medicare offers a prescription drug benefit, and Jeb is standing side by side with New  Hampshire seniors to extend the enrollment deadline and waive the late enrollment penalty until 2007."

Because of the first ever voluntary prescription drug program under Medicare, seniors are saving, on average, $1,100 on their annual drug costs. The top 25 drugs purchased by seniors are experiencing discounts of 35% at retail pharmacies and46% through mail order and seniors are saving more under the new program than they would by purchasing their drugs from Canada, according to the AARP, who endorsed the Medicare Modernization Act that created Medicare Part D.

"Jeb recognizes that despite the successes of the program, seniors are still experiencing some confusion. Instead of harping on the negatives, Jeb has been acting to improve the program. The last thing we should be doing as the deadline approaches is focusing on the negatives. Hopefully, despite voting against the legislation that created Medicare Part D, Steny Hoyer is willing to promote the benefits of the program that is helping millions of seniors lower their drug costs and live longer, healthier lives. Jim Craig shouldn't be playing politics with seniors on a deadline."