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Legislators' votes -- or lack of a vote -- make them accountable to Alaskans

Posted on 07/12/19 by Ken Helander

AARP Alaska sent this letter to all legislators the week of July 7.
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Dear Legislator,

AARP Alaska urges careful consideration of the consequences of each of the governor’s line items vetoed, and the outcomes for the people of Alaska should those vetoes stand. AARP Alaska believes the consequences of three of those vetoes in particular (funding for Senior Benefits, Alaska Legal Services, and Medicaid Adult Dental) will be serious enough for older Alaskans that we regard the override votes “accountability votes” and we will tally and report each legislator’s votes to our 85,000 Alaskan AARP members, now and at election time. Furthermore, failure to override the three vetoes represents complicity in the outcomes, whether positive or negative.

We foresee that the three vetoed items will result in serious losses for individual Alaskans, notably those who receive Senior Benefits, those who utilize legal help from Alaska Legal Services Corporation, and those who need and use the Medicaid Adult Dental care. If older Alaskans lose independence, lose their homes, suffer unfair or illegal actions without defense, experience preventable infection or other compromised health issues, or lose their lives, all as a result of loss of needed state support, then you will be complicit in these outcomes. You will bear the responsibility equally with the governor and his administration.

Please be very sure of your votes and the consequences they represent for every Alaskan. You are accountable.

Respectfully,

Megan Hookey, State Director (Interim)

Ken Helander, Advocacy Director

Terry Snyder, Volunteer State President

This story is provided by AARP Alaska. Visit the AARP Alaska page for more news, events, and programs affecting retirement, health care, and more.

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