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Itís time to refocus lawmakersí priorities

It’s time to demand that lawmakers in Washington work for America and for the people who elected them. We have a group of self-centered representatives who forget they ran up debts. Now they expect average working families to pay for their poor judgment, two wars and home-state pet projects.

President Clinton left office with a surplus. President George W. Bush left office with surplus gone, a country left with massive debt and the economy in the cellar. Instead of working together to control debts and save the economy, their No. 1 goal was to blame and to make President Obama a one-term president. Obama won re-election, and it’s time they put on their big-boy pants, get over it and get to work.

If it’s entitlements they want to go after, it’s time they give up a few fringe benefits. Special tax deductions not available to average taxpayer, plus a one-term retirement plan, health care, paid time off and their fact finding-trips that are more a vacation than fact-finding. What this country needs is more representatives like Sen. Elizabeth Warren from Massachusetts, who’s taking on Wall Street, and Bernie Sanders, the independent from Vermont fighting to save Social Security, Medicare and the Post Office.

Indiana had a chance to elect another stand up representative, Dr. Tom Hayhurst, instead of voting for the person who votes the party line. If we keep voting the party line, we’ll keep getting representatives who work for special-interest groups not for the good of the country. It’s time to put a stop to big money buying America.


Nation canít afford to give out foreign aid

Secretary of State John Kerry just announced aid worth $250 million to Egypt during his trip there.

Our country is in debt to the tune of $16 trillion and rising rapidly, a sequester has just been implemented to try to get our spending under control, Social Security and Medicare are under attack, unemployment payments are to be reduced, along with countless other cost savings, and we are still giving away money as if we had it. We can’t take care of our own citizens, and we are still throwing money around all over the world in the form of foreign aid.

I just don’t get it. Can someone explain that to me?

WILLIAM L. COOK Leo-Cedarville

Medicare beneficiaries can sound off on health care

This month, the 55,200 Medicare beneficiaries in the Fort Wayne area should pay attention to their mailboxes for a chance to make their voice heard on a critical topic – their health care.

If you have Medicare coverage, you may receive the Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems survey in coming weeks, giving you an opportunity to rate your satisfaction with your Medicare health insurance and doctors. The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services conducts this annual survey to hear directly from select beneficiaries about the quality of Medicare health plans and care providers.

Through the survey, you can become part of our nation’s efforts to help improve our health care system. Regrettably, many of the selected don’t respond – in 2012, only 45 percent of selected Medicare beneficiaries responded. If you are chosen, please take the time to provide your feedback before the May 29 deadline.

Both CMS and Medicare insurance providers want to make sure you are receiving the highest-quality medical care from doctors you trust. The survey is one of the tools used to help achieve this goal. Survey responses help the government and insurers identify ways to better serve beneficiaries such as you and improve the quality of your health care experience.

As policymakers continue to debate Medicare issues, the survey is an important opportunity to make your voice heard. I encourage Fort Wayne Medicare beneficiaries to watch for the survey in the mail and take the time to share their experiences to help improve health care quality.

DONNA CRAIG Regional vice president UnitedHealthcare Medicare & Retirement Fort Wayne