Good lord, what a speech! In what can only be called a “passionate takedown”, Rep. John Larson from Connecticut absolutely took Republicans to church about their lying, scheming, dirt-bag plan to end Social Security and Medicare, and their shameless attempt to hide it from their constituents. He pointed out their cynicism and cowardice in proposing a balanced budget amendment that would have essentially cloaked their pro-trillion-dollar-deficit votes so their constituents would think they voted the opposite, i.e. responsibly. (The amendment was shot down 223-184). Then, he nailed them to the wall for the real purpose of the ‘tax cut’ and resulting unprecedented deficit: stealing what Americans put into Social Security and Medicare to give to themselves and corporate America. The truth is, Republicans drove up the deficit through the tax cuts in order to say the deficit is too high to support SS and Medicare.
Here is his amazing speech:
April 12, 2018Press ReleasePresents a Solution for Social Security
Washington, D.C. – Today, Rep. John B. Larson (CT-01) released the following statement after the Republicans attempted to pass a measure requiring devastating cuts to the middle class, seniors, Social Security, and Medicare having already passed a disastrous tax bill that gave tax relief to the wealthy and corporations. Larson opposed the measure and spoke out on the floor of the House of Representatives, the measure ultimately failed.
Click here to watch Larson’s floor remarks prior to the vote.
“My Republican colleagues attempted today to take away the hard-earned Social Security and Medicare benefits that retirees have earned and paid for. They tried to do so by pushing a harmful budget resolution that would cut benefits in order to pay for their $2 trillion deficit-busting tax cuts for corporations and the wealthiest 1 percent,” said Larson.
“This vote is designed to allow Republican Members to avoid responsibility for the fiscal disaster they have created and a backdoor attempt to fulfill their long-held desire to gut Social Security and Medicare. Their solution to fix Social Security is to cut it. The real travesty here is that there are solutions to responsibly fix Social Security – without slashing benefits or asking seniors to wait longer to receive the benefits they have earned and paid for their entire working lives. The solution is the Social Security 2100 Act, which both expands and enhances Social Security for generations to come without adding a penny to the deficit. It would also cut taxes for over 10 million seniors, adjust the Cost of Living Adjustment (COLA) to ensure benefits keep up with the costs that seniors are incurring, and institute a new minimum benefit to ensure that no senior – and especially women – can retire into poverty after a lifetime of work. However, the Republicans won’t give this solution a vote, let alone a hearing. I commend my colleagues for joining with me to defeat this harmful measure, and urge my Republican colleagues to instead take up the Social Security 2100 Act.”
A new report from the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities found that this resolution would cut Social Security by:
- $325 billion in 2025
- And a total of $2.6 trillion by 2028
The following organizations have written to Congress to urge defeat of this harmful resolution:
- Center for Medicare Advocacy
- National Committee to Preserve Social Security & Medicare
- Social Security Works
- Medicare Rights Center
- Strengthen Social Security Coalition
- Leadership Council of Aging Organizations
Enjoy! More of this please, Democrats in Congress and the Senate!
Addendum: Paul Ryan’s Social Security lie (“Social Security is going broke”) found here: paulryan.house.gov/…
Social Security is, most assuredly, NOT going broke:
“Stop with the zombie lies: No, Social Security is not ‘going broke.’” www.washingtonpost.com/… (This has a paywall, but here is the gist:)
Social Security is not going to “run out of money.”
The idea that the program is going to “run out of money” or is “going broke” is a zombie lie, one that deserves to have its head lopped off with a quick slice of Michonne’s katana.
We’re going to have to get a little wonky for a bit, but I’ll try to make this as painless as possible. The short version: under the worst-case scenario, meaning that a poor economy in coming years deprives the system of money and no changes to the program’s financing are made, then Social Security recipients will find themselves getting smaller checks than they ought to….
…Now this is important: the whole point of the trust fund is to be there when that year’s taxes aren’t enough to pay that year’s benefits. When we take money out of the trust fund, it isn’t some kind of crisis, it’s the system working as it was intended.
But won’t the system be “broke” in 2035? No. Under these projections, in 2035 we’d only be paying out to recipients what we take in through taxes. At that point, recipients would get paid only 77 percent of their promised benefits.
1. Medicare isn’t “going broke” even though it does face financial challenges.
When some policymakers talk about Medicare as being “bankrupt” or “going broke” they are referring to the status (or “solvency”) of Medicare’s Hospital Insurance (Part A) trust fund, out of which beneficiaries’ hospital bills are paid. When spending on benefits exceeds revenues (primarily payroll taxes), and assets in the trust fund account are fully depleted, Medicare will not have sufficient funds to pay all Part A benefits. Currently, Medicare’s actuaries estimate that there will be sufficient funds available to pay for hospital insurance benefits in full until 2028 (Figure 1). At that point, Medicare will be able to cover 87% of costs covered under Part A through payroll tax revenues—but the Medicare program will not cease to operate.
What’s that you say? Obamacare helped shore-up Medicare and make it cheaper? (Same link)
3. The ACA helped to reduce Medicare spending growth in the years following its enactment.
With provisions in the ACA to reduce Medicare payments to providers and Medicare Advantage plans and bring in additional revenues, Medicare total and per capita spending growth rate has been lower in recent years than in the decade prior to ACA. The overall program spending growth rate fell from 9.0% between 2000 and 2010 to 4.4% between 2010 and 2015, even as the baby boom generation started aging onto Medicare beginning in 2011. Average annual growth in spending per beneficiary averaged 1.4% between 2010 and 2015, down from 7.4% between 2000 and 2010 (Figure 3).
And, repealing Obamacare would drive up spending:
4. Repealing the ACA, including all Medicare provisions, would increase Medicare spending.
According to CBO, repealing the ACA in its entirely would add $802 billion to Medicare spending over 10 years (Figure 4). Medicare spending would rise primarily as a result of repealing the ACA’s reductions to payments to providers and Medicare Advantage plans. An increase in Medicare spending would likely lead to higher premiums, deductibles, and cost sharing for beneficiaries, and would accelerate the projected insolvency date of the Medicare Hospital Insurance trust fund.
The next time you hear someone talk about “entitlements” and “personal responsibility”, calmly look them in the eye and ask, “Do you pay Social Security and Medicare out of your paycheck? (yes) Do you realize it’s money you’ve earned that goes back to the government, so it is your earned benefit, and when you are 67 you can start drawing that money for your retirement costs?” (blank stare). The lie is absurd, and should never be given the time of day. Let’s teach the poor souls what they are unwittingly supporting.