AARP 2012 Presidential Voter Ed Campaign Kicks into High Gear Print
News Releases - Politics & Elections
Written by Ann Black, AARP   
Tuesday, 13 December 2011 16:21
AARP Connects Issues, Candidates, Voters at Upcoming Iowa and National Forums

Association’s 2012 “Vote for Retirement Security” Campaign Aims to Keep Voters’ 50+ Top Concerns Front and Center

DES MOINES, Dec. 9, 2011—This weekend AARP is kicking its 2012 Presidential voter education and engagement campaign activities into high gear, starting with the ABC-TV Presidential Debate at Drake University on Saturday, Dec. 10, continuing through the Fox News Debate on Thursday, Dec. 15 in Sioux City, and up to the Iowa Caucus on Jan. 3.

“This is crunch time for making sure that the candidates know what is at stake for Iowa voters on the critical issues of retirement security,” said Pete Jeffries, AARP National Campaigns Field Manager.  “Overwhelming majorities of likely caucus goers age 18 and over are concerned about protecting Social Security and Medicare from budget cuts, and they’re extremely concerned about jobs and being able to save for their retirement.  We’re working to ensure that the candidates are asked questions about these issues and that voters know where the candidates stand on these important pocketbook concerns.”

In the tradition of AARP’s 25-year history of non-partisan voter education efforts, the association’s 2012 caucus and primary campaign is designed to engage, listen to and inform voters and the candidates on the major issues affecting older voters. This year’s efforts launched in Iowa with a major AARP presence at the Iowa Straw Poll in August, and have picked up over the past few weeks with members and volunteers participating at candidate events in Des Moines and across the state asking questions on critical retirement security issues like jobs and the economy, Social Security and Medicare.

This weekend, AARP is providing pre-debate media packet information and sponsoring the post-debate Spin Room in the Drake Fine Arts Center on Saturday night to highlight the Association’s new voter education website, The website features survey findings of GOP likely caucus and primary voters in the first four early nominating states and AARP’s 2012 first-time Presidential Candidate Video Voters’ Guide featuring four of the GOP candidates on jobs and the economy, retirement security, Social Security and Medicare. Iowa veteran political TV reporter Dave Price conducted the one-one-one unedited interviews with candidates who registered at 5% or higher in an average of national polls as of Oct. 3.  They include Congresswoman Michele Bachmann, former U.S. House Speaker Newt Gingrich, Congressman Ron Paul and Texas Governor Rick Perry.  Former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney declined invitations to participate. The video voters’ guide was produced by AARP in Des Moines with Mediacom.  In addition to posting at, the guides are being mailed to Republican voters in the early nominating states of Iowa, New Hampshire, South Carolina, Florida and Nevada.

AARP is a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization with a membership that helps people 50+ have independence, choice and control in ways that are beneficial and affordable to them and society as a whole. AARP does not endorse candidates for public office or make contributions to either political campaigns or candidates. We produce AARP The Magazine, the definitive voice for 50+ Americans and the world's largest-circulation magazine with nearly 35 million readers; AARP Bulletin, the go-to news source for AARP's millions of members and Americans 50+; AARP VIVA, the only bilingual U.S. publication dedicated exclusively to the 50+ Hispanic community; and our website, AARP Foundation is an affiliated charity that provides security, protection, and empowerment to older persons in need with support from thousands of volunteers, donors, and sponsors. We have staffed offices in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands.

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