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House GOP Wants to Drastically Cut Our Social Security
U.S. Rep. Sam Johnson (R-TX), chair of the Social Security subcommittee of the House Ways and Means Committee, has filed a bill that would cut Social Security drastically. Analysts say it would mean a 35% cut from current levels for some retirees.
The Social Security Reform Act of 2016, H.R. 6489, gradually raises the retirement age from 67 to 69 for Americans who are 49 or younger. It changes the formula that determines the size of a retiree’s initial payments and it mandates a less generous formula for calculating cost of living increases.
“Now is when we find out if the president-elect will keep his promise not to cut Social Security,” said Robert Roach, Jr., President of the Alliance. “We know the voters certainly didn’t elect him hoping that cuts would happen.”
“This plan’s approach is a non-starter,” he continued. “It does not raise any revenues for the Social Security Trust Fund – it only cuts benefits.”
The Johnson plan would gradually turn Social Security into a program that produces essentially one flat benefit, regardless of how much a worker contributed. The so-called House Freedom caucus, a group of extreme conservatives, have said they want Social Security and Medicare cuts to come in the first 30 days of 2017, according to The Wall Street Journal.
Johnson’s bill doesn’t just affect future retirees. It reduces Social Security’s cost of living increases (COLAs) for everyone and eliminate them entirely for some retirees. The extreme plan will reduce benefits for spouses and children of seriously disabled workers.
Johnson’s initial cuts come in the form of the two-year retirement age increase, which according to Paul Van de Water, a senior fellow at the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, amounts to a seven percent cut each year.
National Medicare Call-In Days Set for January 4th, 23rd
House Speaker Paul Ryan told Fox News that he would push legislation in early 2017 that would end Medicare’s guaranteed health care benefits. A national call-in day has been set up in response to the threat.
Call your Member of Congress on Wednesday, January 4th and say, “Hands Off My Medicare! I Earned It!” The number is (866) 828-4162.
We will also be calling the White House on Monday, January 23rd, once the new president is inaugurated, with a similar message.
More information is forthcoming via e-mail.
“Medicare Under Attack” Webinar Link Available
On Monday the Alliance conducted a webinar that explains how the GOP plans to attack our earned Medicare benefits and what we are doing to fight back. For those who missed the live version or want to see it again, watch here.
“It’s important that we all get informed about the specifics of the Republican plans to gut your guaranteed benefits and see how you can get involved,” said Richard Fiesta, Executive Director of the Alliance. “Polls show that very few Americans know about this plan, but once they learn the details 67% disapprove. We need to first raise awareness and them mobilize our members and their friends and families to speak out against this plan.