Iowans on Medicare are being shortchanged, according to Iowa Senator Tom Harkin. He says they’re getting paltry benefits compared to what recipients in more populous states receive. Harkin requested a study by the Health Care Finance Agency that would show how the Medicare system would be running if all states were treated like Iowa.Harkin says Iowans often don’t get benefits like eyeglasses or hearing aids which are made available to counterparts elsewhere who join H-M-Os. He says Iowa seniors are being penalized for the efficient, cost-effective health care system in our state.Harkin says he’s not suggesting all states get the same treatment as Iowa by Medicare — he just wants Iowa brought up to the level of all others. He’s introducing legislation today which he says would “mandate restoration of fairness” by Medicare.With Vice President Gore’s sweep of Super Tuesday states, Senator Harkin says he’s delighted by the showing of his “friend.” Harkin says Gore’s victories will unify the party behind Gore’s campaign.Republican candidate John McCain attributes some of his primary victories to votes from independent and democrat voters. Harkin says those democrats who strayed will come back to the fold in November for Gore.Harkin blames republicans in Congress for not allowing passage of campaign finance reform, an issue trumpeted by McCain.Ethanol will be the topic of a high level strategy meeting tomorrow between Congressional and White House leaders. Senator Harkin says he’ll be joined by South Dakota democrat Tom Daschle, President Clinton’s Chief of Staff and others.Harkin says alternative fuel sources, like corn-based ethanol, could help reduce theU-S’ reliance on foreign oil, as gasoline prices in Iowa are 50-cents a gallon higher than they were a year ago..and climbing.
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