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Poll: Older Mainers Worry About Inflation, Prescription Drug Prices

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Thursday, June 9, 2022   

Ahead of next Tuesday's primary election, new polling shows many Mainers are extremely motivated to vote, and reveals the issues that matter most to them.

More than 90% of Maine voters said they would be more likely to vote for a candidate for Congress who supports protecting Medicare and Social Security from cuts.

Noël Bonam, state director of AARP Maine, which commissioned the poll, noted 88% of voters older than 50 said they plan to vote this midterm election, and said it is a big deal because usually, turnout is low in midterm elections.

"A lot of folks are really concerned about the increasing cost of everything," Bonam observed. "Inflation really came up as the number one issue across the board. Folks are very concerned about increasing costs, they're having to figure out how to pay for food versus gas versus utilities and prescription drugs."

He added with the cost of prescription drugs skyrocketing, many older Mainers take the question of allowing Medicare to negotiate drug prices seriously. Among voters surveyed, 91% said they think the federal government should allow negotiations.

Among respondents, 60% said they plan to vote on Election Day, 12% said they'll vote early in-person, and 22% said they plan to vote by mail. Bonam pointed out for more information, voters can go to the Secretary of State's website, or aarp.org/mevotes.

"We want older voters to know how to vote and where to vote," Bonam explained. "And to know the position of the candidates before they vote. And it's also clear that older voters are looking for candidates who are coming to the table with solutions and not just talking about the problems."

According to the survey, Gov. Janet Mills narrowly leads her Republican opponent, former Gov. Paul LePage, 51% to 46%. Rep. Jared Golden, a Democrat from District Two, narrowly leads former Representative Bruce Poliquin 50% to 43%, and First District Democratic Representative Chellie Pingree leads Republican opponent Ed Thelander 42% to 25%.

Disclosure: AARP Maine contributes to our fund for reporting on Consumer Issues, Health Issues, Senior Issues, and Social Justice. If you would like to help support news in the public interest, click here.


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