For Immediate Release
Contact: Jean Weinberg
CONGRESSIONAL CANDIDATE JIM CRAIG DEMANDS ACCOUNTABILITY FROM REP JEB BRADLEY AND THE CONFUSING PRESCRIPTION DRUG PROGRAM HE DESIGNED
GAO report shows Medicare Prescription Drug Plans Provide Incomplete Information About Their Programs
(July 11, 2006)— Today, Congressional Candidate Jim Craig demanded that Rep. Jeb Bradley be held accountable for the confusing, risky Medicare Part D prescription drug program. New findings from the Government Accountability Office show that Medicare prescription drug plans generally provided incomplete and inaccurate information to callers with questions about their benefit. Rep. Jeb Bradley (NH-01) was a member of the failed Prescription Drug Action Team that drafted the legislation and was a co-sponsor of the risky Medicare Part D Prescription Drug Bill .
“ It’s time to hold Congress and Rep. Jeb Bradley accountable for this confusing prescription drug program,” Jim said. “From the beginning, they had it in their power to protect seniors but they put big special interests and pharmaceutical companies ahead of New Hampshire families. It is time to put politics aside and sit down together to come up with solutions that work for New Hampshire families.”
Findings show of 900 calls to 10 of the largest companies that offer drug coverage to Medicare beneficiary investigators reached customer service representatives in 864 calls. Twenty two percent of the 864 responses were inaccurate, 29 percent were incomplete, and no answers were provided to the other questions. The plans provided accurate responses to only one third of the calls. Two of the 10 companies gave inaccurate or incomplete information at least 75 percent of the time.
In 2003, when Jeb Bradley, George Bush and Congress designed Medicare Part D, Jeb Bradley owned over $360,000 in pharmaceutical company stock. According to his 2003 Personal Financial Disclosure report filed with the Office of the Clerk of the US House of Representatives, Bradley's personal holdings included investments of $251,000 in Bristol Myers Squibb Company, $12,553 in Johnson & Johnson, $54,192 in Merck & Company and $46,388 in Pfizer stock .
Jim Craig, candidate for Congress in New Hampshire’s First District, is a lifelong resident of New Hampshire and his roots in the Granite State stretch for five generations. As a veteran of the US Army, he worked for his law degree with the help from the GI Bill and joined his family's law practice. For over 20 years, he has promoted the health and well-being of families by serving on non-profit community boards. He was elected to the New Hampshire State House in 1998 and now serves as Democratic Leader. While in Concord, he worked tirelessly to create bipartisan, practical solutions for the state. As leader, he created a labor caucus that addresses working families' concerns.
###JEB BRADLEY’S RECORD ON MEDICARE PART D Jeb Bradley named to the Prescription Drug Action team by Speaker Dennis Hastert (April 11, 2003)
Jeb Voted for the GOP Medicare Prescription Drug Bill.
The bill made sweeping changes to Medicare that will give billions of dollars to businesses and the health care industry, while forcing seniors to accept annual increases in premiums and deductibles and a growing gap in coverage for the prescription drugs they buy. The bill passed the House 220-215 and was signed into law. (HR 1, Vote #669, 11/22/2003)
Jeb voted against allowing the Department of Health and Human Services to directly negotiate lower drug prices with pharmaceutical companies. (HR 1, 11/22/03, #688)
Jeb voted against easing restrictions on the re-importation of drugs from Canada, which would have provided a cost saving to American seniors . (HR 1,11/22/03, #688)
Jeb Voted For Sham Prescription Drug Bill.
This prescription drug plan pushes seniors into HMOs, has no limits on premiums, and contains a massive gap in coverage that will still cost many seniors thousands. The bill passed 216-215. (HR 1, Vote #332, 6/27/2003)
Jeb Voted Against Changing Medicare Part D
This measure would have established a $100 yearly deductible and $25 monthly premium, to cover 80% of all drug costs between up to $2000, and all drug costs above that level. Instead, Bradley voted to create a program with a $2800 "doughnut hole" and only 95% coverage for expenses above $5100. (HR1, 6/27/03, #330)