LTC Bullet:  LTC Gadflies in Iowa 

Thursday, February 1, 2007 

Seattle-- 

LTC Comment:  The ranks of presidential candidates are bulging already.  They're descending on Iowa because of that state's early "caucuses."  But LTC isn't on the political radar screen yet.  Wanna do something about that?   

LTC BULLET:  LTC GADFLIES IN IOWA 

LTC Comment:  After our LTC Bullet titled "LTC Gadflies" last week (read it in The Zone at http://www.centerltc.com/bullets/latest/672.htm), we received dozens of positive replies from Center members. 

That Bullet proposed a nationwide campaign to raise the national consciousness about long-term care public policy and personal planning.  We proposed to bird-dog the 2008 political candidates and ask them the tough policy and personal questions about long-term care.  We invited readers to join us. 

One reply we received to this clarion call was especially interesting.  The president of a PR firm in Iowa wrote to urge us not to wait until 2008, but to start immediately in Iowa, where presidential campaigning is already gearing up big time.  He offered advice pro bono on how to proceed and opined that "Many candidates, and potential candidates, are stopping regularly, and it is a good time to get issues before them in small groups where the candidates are very actively and competitively looking for support." 

So, we polled the Center's membership in Iowa about their interest in pushing LTC onto the political agenda.  We received some enthusiastic replies.  They agreed to circulate the following announcement among their friends and colleagues in Iowa to see if we can arouse enough interest to support this initiative. 

We're sending the same announcement to you in today's LTC Bullet with this request.  If you know people in Iowa who might be interested, please forward this message to them.  If they'd like to participate, have them contact me at smoses@centerltc.com.  I'll forward this invitation to them on Center for Long-Term Care Reform letterhead for wider distribution and sign them up to receive future announcements. 

Let's see where this leads.  If enough Iowans are willing to write a letter to the editor of their local newspaper or attend a candidate forum and raise the LTC issue, I'll pitch in by drafting model letters, op-eds, and articles to advance the cause.   

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Dear Iowa Friends: 

You are probably not members of the Center for Long-Term Care Reform (www.centerltc.com), but I hope you know who we are and what we're trying to achieve. That is: universal access to top quality long-term care for all Americans, privately financed by insurance whenever possible.  

To achieve that goal, we have to get long-term care to the top of the political agenda.  A good way to do that is to get presidential candidates to think about the issue and to go on the record. The best way to do that is to reach them when they're most reachable. That's where you Iowan advocates of LTC insurance come in.  

The following letter was drafted by a PR firm in Iowa that has volunteered to help us, pro bono if necessary, to reach the candidates, ask them the tough personal and policy questions about long-term care, and secure the national media coverage necessary to raise the country's consciousness about the risk and cost of LTC. 

Please read the following brief message and if you can participate, let me know by email at smoses@centerltc.com or by phone at 206-283-7036. If you say "I'm in," I'll keep you in the loop, prepare draft letters to the editor you can use, write op-eds for publication in local papers, and come to Iowa myself if it will help.  Now, here's the appeal.  Thanks for your consideration. 

Between now and January 14, 2008, Iowans will have a tremendous opportunity to assist in elevating long term care issues onto the national policy stage. In less then a year the Iowa Caucuses will kick off the Presidential Primary Season as they have since 1976.  

The Caucuses provide a golden opportunity to engage candidates for our nation's highest office in one-to-one, detailed conversations regarding specific policy issues. The national media track these "policy trends" and the candidates' responses, and they share the candidates' positions with the rest of the nation.  

Each of the nearly two dozen candidates and potential candidates for the Presidency will be crisscrossing the state of Iowa in the coming months. Whether it is a large rally in Iowa City or setting up a "listening post" in a café in tiny Primghar - virtually every corner of the state will receive multiple visits from these prospective candidates. One of these candidates will be the next President of the United States.  

As Iowans, you enjoy a unique opportunity to be "courted" for your support by Presidential hopefuls. Unlike larger primary state contests that are held later in the process, the Iowa Caucus campaigns are not driven by television ads and large gatherings. The Iowa Caucuses are retail enterprises with street level, person-to-person interaction between candidates and voters.  

If we are serious about gaining attention for the massive, looming financial crisis in long-term care in the United States, there can be no better opportunity than the build up to the Iowa Caucuses for getting our message out. Candidates are already visiting Iowa, and events are being scheduled. Major political party events are held in August and October where our presence is critical to get the message to the candidates.  

In the coming weeks, we will be gauging the level of effort we can engage for a "Caucus Project" designed to raise awareness of long term care issues. To that end, the Center for LTC Reform is surveying our Iowa members and contacts to determine your level of interest in this awareness campaign. 

If you are interested in providing assistance to this effort, please let me know. Based on the level of response we receive, we can better determine how best to promote our issues with the 2008 Presidential hopefuls.  

If you decide to participate, even to the extent of committing to write one letter to the editor or attend a single candidate forum, we'll give you a free membership in the Center for Long-Term Care Reform for the duration of this project.  That's a $150 value and includes our daily LTC Bullets and E-Alerts, if you want them, and access to our password protected website "The Zone" including our new comprehensive "Almanac of Long-Term Care." 

Help us take the message of rational long-term care public policy and responsible personal long-term care planning to our national political elite as they circulate through Iowa this year. 

Thanks for your consideration. 

Sincerely, 

Steve Moses 

Stephen A. Moses, President
Center for Long-Term Care Reform, Inc.
2212 Queen Anne Avenue North, #110
Seattle, WA 98109
Office: 206-283-7036
Fax: 206-283-6536
Email: smoses@centerltc.com
Web site: www.centerltc.com
 

The Center for Long-Term Care Reform, Inc. is a private institute dedicated to ensuring quality long-term care for all Americans. Sign up for our LTC Bullets online newsletter and become a member of the Center at www.centerltc.com.