With the 2012 election merely a few months away, AARP conducted a survey on one of the most important voter blocs of the election: those 50+. AARP Vice President, Nancy Leamond joined me earlier this week to share the results from this recent survey and to discuss what candidates must do to sway voters.
Candace Rose: Can you tell us about the recent survey conducted by AARP?
Nancy Leamond: “Yes, in a survey we’ve released this morning we found that voters 50+, especially boomers who are still in the workforce are driven by economic anxieties that extend well beyond jobs. And as you know jobs have been the focus of discussion in the campaign, but it turns out boomers are really more worried about other things like rising prices, healthcare costs, more taxes and having to save for retirement. We think this economic anxiety is going to be a huge factor as they consider their candidate as they go to the polls.”
Candace Rose: What impact will 50+ voters have in the 2012 election?
Nancy Leamond: “Well, in the battleground states we know that 4 out of every 10 voters is going to be over the age of 50. And the other thing we know about the older voter is they tend to vote. They plan on being involved in the election and voting in November. So it’s very important that candidates make sure that this voting bloc understands their positions on medicare and social security.”
Candace Rose: What do candidates need to do swing voters to their side?
Nancy Leamond: “Well, as I said, voters right now, as we learned in this survey are very frustrated. They don’t feel (the majority of them, about 65%) that they’re getting a clear idea of what the candidates would do if elected, on medicare and social security. And job one for the candidates is to talk about these issues, lay out their plans and tell the voters how they’re going to secure these economic lifelines that are so important.”
Candace Rose: Do you have any additional information you’d like to share?
Nancy Leamond: “Well, the entire survey will be posted on EarnedASay.org– that’s our website. We urge people to go there. We launched a national conversation with people over the age of 50 on Medicare and Social Security earlier this year, and it’s called Earned A Say. We urge you to go to that website, learn more about this conversation, see the results of this survey, and also very soon we’re going to have on EarnedASay.org the voter guides that are going to give you a capsule version on where the candidates stand on the issues.”