Sanders: No cuts to Social Security

Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) marked the 79th anniversary of Social Security by vowing to fight any efforts to cut benefits.

“Social Security has been the most successful anti-poverty program in American history,” Sanders said. “We must oppose all efforts to cut Social Security and fight hard to expand it.”

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When Social Security was first enacted in 1935, nearly half of U.S. seniors lived in poverty — now that number is only 9 percent.

Some Republicans have proposed privatizing the Social Security program or reducing the cost of living adjustments (COLAs) through a chained consumer price index because the Social Security Trust Fund has been operating at a deficit.

But Sanders, an ardent supporter of the program, frequently points out that Social Security hasn’t contributed a “dime” to the deficit. He calls it “the most successful federal program in modern American history.”

Sanders has said that if Republicans are worried about the solvency of the program — which has enough money to pay benefits for the next 19 years — they should agree to lift the payroll tax.

Currently, incomes more than $117,000 a year are not subject to the Social Security payroll tax so wealthier people contribute less of a percentage of their income than poor people. Sanders's bill would increase that income cap to $250,000 a year.

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