Earlier this year, a Congressional report referred to the AARP as a “massive for-profit enterprise” whose financial structure “conflicts with its legal requirements to ‘primarily operate to promote the common good and social welfare of a community of people.’”
Although some people argue that the Congressional investigation against AARP was politically motivated, there is no escaping the fact that AARP’s revenues from royalties – mostly from insurance sales – are more than two and half times higher than its membership dues (as of 2009).
That does raise a fair question about conflict of interest: If something was not in the best interest of seniors but would raise millions of dollars for AARP through insurance sales, would AARP put principle ahead of profit?
Unlike AARP, The Senior Citizens League is a true grassroots organization. Almost one hundred percent of our revenue comes from individual donations, and we do not sell any products to our members. We even refuse outside advertising in our materials. Our sole focus is on education and protection of the Social Security and Medicare benefits senior citizens have earned and paid for.
As a nonpartisan grassroots organization, we make our policy decisions based on only one thing: what is best for senior citizens.
Some of our members have told us that they’ve also joined AARP for the benefits. We’re all for seniors saving money, so if you want to join AARP for the discounts, go for it. But we hope you will choose The Senior Citizens League as the group fighting for you on Capitol Hill.