Republicans and their Wall Street allies are not backing away from their threats to cut Social Security by privatization, means-testing and raising the retirement age to 70 or beyond.
Older Americans can’t afford attacks on our earned Social Security benefits. Many are physically unable to work longer — even if employers were willing to hire them. Whether it was George W. Bush’s attempts at privatization, the benefit cutting Chained-CPI (that Obama had agreed to in the Bowles-Simpson recommendations), or the draconian Paul Ryan budget ... FDR's Social Security legacy is always under attack.
The Intercept: Trump policy adviser and co-chairman Sam Clovis said last week that the real estate mogul would look at changes to all federal programs, “including entitlement programs like Social Security and Medicare,” as part of a deficit reduction effort.
L.A. Times: Clovis, Trump’s senior policy advisor, recently said that a Trump administration would ‘look at” privatization of Medicare and Social Security after a year or two. And he isn’t the only Trump team member to advocate cutting off support for seniors. John Mashburn, Trump’s policy director, recently likened the disability program to a welfare program.
President Obama recently nominated Charles Blahous and Robert Reischauer to second terms as Social Security and Medicare Public Trustees and this week the Senate Finance Committee held confirmation hearings for both nominees.
The Alliance for Retired Americans and numerous other organizations that support Social Security, strongly opposes the Blahous renomination. He is far from a neutral expert on social insurance but served as the executive director of former President George W. Bush’s “Commission to Strengthen Social Security.” That Commission developed plans to privatize Social Security, which were soundly rejected by the Congress. Blahous is affiliated with the conservative Mercatus Center.
“As a Mercatus Center fellow Blahous has said that Social Security is too generous to retirees and advocated against ways to strengthen the system,” said Robert Roach, President of the Alliance. “It is not appropriate for a trustee, whose job is to ensure the continued viability of the Social Security system to be actively working against it.”
A United States Government Accountability Office (GAO) report released this month found that defined contribution plans don’t have the participation levels, especially in lower income and minority households, to create enough savings for retirement.
Bernie Sanders wants to lift the $118,500 cap to $250,000 to shore up the Social Security trust fund and expand benefits. But just like in 2008 when Hillary Clinton ran against OBama, she does not because she says she doesn't want to raise taxes on the "middle-class". But $250,000 a year is in the top 1% of wage earners. (Clinton may want to expand benefits for low income women, but it's uncertain how this would be paid for.)