Social Security is the most successful domestic program in our nation’s history. It has provided millions of Americans with the chance to retire with dignity and will continue to be the foundation of a secure retirement as future generations enter their golden years.
Unfortunately, this bedrock of the American middle class is once again under attack. But once again, they simply do not have the facts on their side. Here are the facts:
- Social Security is fully solvent for another 26 years.
- The average Social Security benefit is modest – only $14,000 per year.
- Even with these modest benefits Social Security lifts over 13 million seniors out of poverty.
- For almost half of our seniors Social Security makes up around 80 percent of their retirement income.
Importantly, Social Security has never contributed one dime to the federal deficit. Nor is Social Security a long-term contributor to our national debt.
For this reason, I simply do not understand those who insist upon cutting social security benefits now in order to prevent benefit cuts in the future, especially when there are simple and fair ways to shore up social security that will not require benefit cuts. I have a modest proposal for ensuring that Social Security benefits will be paid in full for generations to come: Higher-income earners should pay into Social Security at the same rate as working families. Why is it that a factory worker making $50,000 pays the payroll tax on 100 percent of her income, while a banker making $500,000 pays the tax on only the first $106,800, just 21 percent of his income? Let’s raise the cap!
Let’s also remember who we are talking about– our parents and grandparents, children, and neighbors. Social Security allows our families and friends to continue their lives as they grow old. That is a promise we must keep and one which we will continue to insist on for future generations.