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PA GOP AD WATCH: Desperate Onorato Lies, Tries To Scare Voters

PA GOP AD WATCH: Desperate Onorato Lies, Tries To Scare Voters

HARRISBURG – Republican Party of Pennsylvania Chairman Rob Gleason released the following statement regarding Democrat gubernatorial candidate Dan Onorato’s desperate television advertisement.
 
“It looks like Dan Onorato’s taking a page out of the Ed Rendell playbook of shameless campaigning,” Gleason said. “Distortions and lies are the only tools that Dan Onorato has left in his campaign arsenal now that’s he’s been soundly defeated by Tom Corbett on the issues.
 
“While Tom Corbett is running on a platform based on creating jobs, reducing government and no-new-taxes, Dan Onorato has chosen to take this campaign into the gutter by releasing an ad that is filled with outright lies. At a time when Pennsylvania’s unemployment rate hovers nears 10% and our deficit grows by the day, it’s certainly telling that Dan Onorato feels the need to make up baseless accusations against Tom Corbett in an attempt to gain cheap political points.
 
“While Dan Onorato spends his days making up ridiculous accusations against his opponent, Tom Corbett will continue to focus on how to best solve the problems facing our Commonwealth.”
 
In a column appearing today on Capitolwire.com, Harrisburg Bureau Chief Pete DeCoursey criticized the Onorato campaign for an ad in which they “make up” alleged cuts that Tom Corbett would make to the state budget in an attempt at “seeing how many AARP members they can terrify.” He continued:
 
“But apart from saying ‘everybody is going to have to feel that cut,’ there is absolutely no evidence proffered that these programs are on Corbett’s chopping block…
 
Bottom line…This is a desperate ad, and Onorato’s campaign won’t even say if he believes it is true. 

Onorato should explain why a trained lawyer and CPA is willing to lower the not-lofty standard of political ad fairness and descend to ‘MIGHTA’ ‘WOULDA’ ‘COULDA’ to get elected. Or he should publicly explain why he believes Corbett will do this.
 
If Onorato is airing an ad that he and his staff won’t  say is accurate and fairly represents what Corbett will do, voters ‘COULD’ believe he ‘MIGHT’ say anything to get elected.”  (Pete DeCoursey, “OFF THE FLOOR: Onorato Should Pull Senior-Scaring ‘COULD’ AND ‘MIGHT’ Ad,” Capitolwire.com, 10/22/10)
 
Claim #1: Tom’s plan could slash Meals on Wheels. FALSE
·         Meals on Wheels is not a state program and the funding comes from a variety of sources depending on the specific program but the vast majority of funding comes from the federal government with the local share, if existent, mostly coming from either Lottery funds or private organizations. Tom Corbett is committed to protecting the viability of the lottery fund and those services it funds.

Backup from Corbett Seniors policy: As Governor, Tom Corbett will ensure that lottery funds are exclusively used for the benefits and rights of older Pennsylvanians. The lottery fund is a vital source of funding for important senior programs and initiatives, such as PACE, property tax and rent rebates, free and reduced fare rides, abuse protection, family caregiver support, congregate and home delivered meals, senior community centers and health and wellness programs.
 
Claim #2: Tom’s plan may cut home healthcare. FALSE
·         In Tom’s policy plan to protect Pennsylvania senior citizens he explicitly highlights his support for the long term care system including specifically home healthcare. He is committed to meeting the needs of our seniors including their preference where care is provided.

Backup from Corbett Seniors policy: As Governor, Tom Corbett will work to ensure that older Pennsylvanians get the care and services they need in the setting that is consistent with their needs and preference. He will look to rebalance Medicaid spending and consider using lottery fund surpluses to support home-based institutional care to provide access to safe and appropriate care and services.
 
Claim #3: Tom’s plan may stop Alzheimer’s Outreach. FALSE.
·         Tom Corbett has expressed his support for the Department of Aging where such services are organized and nowhere has any suggestion been made on altering these very important and vital programs. Alzheimer’s Outreach is funded through the Lottery Fund and supplemented by a federal grant. He has been crystal clear on protecting the integrity of the Lottery Fund that provides funding for this and many other senior programs.

 Backup from Corbett Healthcare policy: Tom Corbett will work to protect the integrity of the Lottery Fund to ensure that the funds raised go to meet unmet care and service needs for seniors as intended. 

 Backup from Corbett Seniors policy: As Governor, Tom Corbett will ensure that the Department of Aging will remain an independent, cabinet-level department as created in 1979. Tom Corbett does not support merging the Department of Aging with sub-agencies within the Department of Public Welfare as proposed by the current Administration. As Governor, Tom Corbett will ensure that lottery funds are exclusively used for the benefits and rights of older Pennsylvanians. The lottery fund is a vital source of funding for important senior programs and initiatives, such as PACE, property tax and rent rebates, free and reduced fare rides, abuse protection, family caregiver support, congregate and home delivered meals, senior community centers and health and wellness programs.
 
Claim #4: Tom’s plan could limit funding for Senior Centers. FALSE.
·         Senior Centers are funded primarily by lottery funds, Tom Corbett has vowed to protect the lottery funds for use exclusively on senior services as it was originally intended, he does not support the proposed merger of the Department of Aging and the Department of Public Welfare primarily to protect the lottery fund and he has called for the release of lottery fund surpluses for more senior services.

Backup from Corbett Seniors Policy: As Governor, Tom Corbett will ensure that lottery funds are exclusively used for the benefits and rights of older Pennsylvanians. The lottery fund is a vital source of funding for important senior programs and initiatives, such as PACE, property tax and rent rebates, free and reduced fare rides, abuse protection, family caregiver support, congregate and home delivered meals, senior community centers and health and wellness programs. Tom Corbett will ensure that the Department of Aging will remain an independent, cabinet-level department as created in 1979. Tom Corbett does not support merging the Department of Aging with sub-agencies within the Department of Public Welfare as proposed by the current Administration. 

Claim #5: Tom sued to stop Seniors from receiving healthcare. FALSE.
·         Tom Corbett has demonstrated his commitment to seniors through his work as Pennsylvania’s top law enforcement officer including the Attorney General’s Health Care Section saving over $800,000 for seniors since January of 2009 and the Consumer Protection Unit handling over 8,900 complaints and saving more than $1M.

In truth, the Federal healthcare legislation fully supported by Dan Onorato massively cuts the Medicare Advantage program for seniors and cuts the Medicare rates of providers that see those very same seniors. Sources: DesMoines Register, 10/5; Business First, 10/1; CQHealthBeat, 10/5; Reuters 3/22; Reductions in Medicare Advantage Payments: The Impact on Seniors by Region 9/14

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