By Erik Wasson - 07/09/11 08:33 PM EDT
The Social Security Administration estimates that a proposal floated by the Obama administration would put 245,000 people into poverty, according to an analysis released by liberal senator Bernie SandersBernie Sanders'Feel Bern' PAC comes under scrutiny Email story won’t end for Clinton Dems leery of Planned Parenthood cuts spark Senate scuffle MORE (I-Vt.) on Saturday.
That level of impact would be felt by 2050 if a proposal to change the way inflation is measured is adopted, Sanders announced. The change to the way SSA would calculate the Consumer Price Index has been floated in debt ceiling talks between Congress and the White House. The White House has suggested revising CPI for both the tax code, in order to generate more revenue, and for benefits.
Benefits for those who are 80-89 would drop by $960 a year. Benefits for women would fall by 3.5 percent overall while men’s benefits would drop by 2.9 percent.
By 2050, seniors in the 80-89 age bracket would see benefits fall by $1,200 a year.
"I am especially disturbed that the president is considering cuts in Social Security after he campaigned against cuts in 2008," Sanders said. "The American people expect the president to keep his word."
This week Sanders demanded that Senate Majority Leader Harry ReidHarry ReidDems leery of Planned Parenthood cuts spark Senate scuffle Overnight Finance: Senate sends Puerto Rico bill to Obama | Treasury, lawmakers to meet on tax rules | Obama hits Trump on NAFTA | Fed approves most banks' capital plans Senate passes Puerto Rico debt relief bill MORE (D-Nev.) join House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) in flatly ruling out any benefit cuts to Social Security as part of the debt deal.
Reid in the past has said Social Security does not need to be reformed for decades. While Social Security is expected to be unable to pay full benefits by 2036, it is not a major driver of the budget deficit. Republicans want the program reformed now because they fear otherwise that as 2036 approaches massive tax hikes that could stall the economy would be demanded by senior citizens.