AL GORE: Attacks Bush on Health Care, Medicare Proposals
With Bill Bradley and John McCain out of the way, Vice President Al Gore and Texas Gov. George W. Bush can now take aim at each other, the New York Daily News reports. Campaigning at a Miami, Fla. hospital, Gore said that Bush "has no plan to expand access to health care, no plan to have a national patients' bill of rights, no plan to give seniors help with prescription drugs -- and in the words of John McCain, he doesn't put one penny into Medicare." Gore charged that because "wealthy and healthy" Republicans have contributed heavily to Bush's campaign, Bush is thus "soft on health care reform" (DeFrank, 3/14). Bush has proposed "fundamentally transforming Medicare ... from a system that directly provides health care into one that provides seniors subsidies to purchase private insurance." But Gore said Bush's proposals would be a "risk to the ... safety net," adding that it "would create a two-track system," allowing wealthier retirees to purchase better care (Brownstein, Los Angeles Times, 3/14). At a town hall meeting in Metairie, La., Bush said, "This guy will say anything to get elected" (New York Daily News, 3/14).
Can Gore Handle Health Care Better?
Gore edges out Bush as the candidate who would better handle Medicare and health care, according to a USA Today/CNN/Gallup poll. Forty-nine percent of 482 adults said that Gore would handle social security and Medicare better, while 40% chose Bush. Gore also beat out Bush 54%-34% in addressing health care. The poll has a +/- 5% margin of error and was conducted last Friday through Sunday (USA Today/CNN/Gallup poll, 3/14).