Forget Talk About Cutting Social Security, New
Campaign Wants Benefits Increased
National Committee wants to end Congressional efforts
to reduce the program and put spot light on making it better
10, 2014 - A new campaign to persuade Congress to increase the benefits
provided by Social Security was launched last week by the National
Committee to Preserve Social Security and Medicare. With most of the
Congressional efforts in the last few years being aimed at reducing the
cost of the program, it may seem, at first, to be at odds with public
opinion. But, maybe not. There is considerable polling to show Americans
do place great value on Social Security.
The "Boost Social Security Now" education campaign
is to “inform and mobilize our membership, grassroots networks and
on-line communities to convince Congress that now is the time to boost
benefits, not cut them,” according to the news release introducing the
The NCPSSM, also known as “The National Committee,”
study from 2013 to show the public’s support for expanding the
entitlement program. The study found, “Large majorities
of Americans, both Republicans and Democrats, agree on ways to
strengthen Social Security - without cutting benefits. Fully 74% of
Republicans and 88% of Democrats agree that ‘it is critical to preserve
Social Security even if it means increasing Social Security taxes paid
by working Americans’.” That study was funded by the National Academy of
A study by Pew Research
released last December also uncovered strong support for Social
Security. It reported, “Majorities of Democrats (79%), independents
(66%) and Republicans (62%) say it is more important to continue current
spending levels for Social Security and Medicare than to take steps to
reduce the budget deficit. (Pew Research, “In
Deficit Debate, Public Resists Cuts in Entitlements and Aid to Poor,”
Dec. 19, 2013
NCPSSM says it has been recognized for more than 30
years as one of the nation’s most “ardent and effective defenders” of
America’s social insurance safety net.
pointed to an effort it made in 2012, which the news release said,
“expanded its focus on Social Security. That
campaign called for changing the COLA to better reflect the
inflation costs for senior citizens and for an “across-the-board benefit
increase.” It was, however, primarily aimed at making changes in Social
Security to “modernize the program” to better represent women.
“Since that time, the call for expanded benefits
has grown louder and includes support from within Congress including
Senators Elizabeth Warren, Tom Harkin and Bernie Sanders, and
Representatives Linda Sanchez and Gwen Moore,” the news release states.
years, Washington’s fiscal debate has been co-opted by the billion
dollar austerity lobby and its single-minded quest to cut middle-class
benefits in Social Security and Medicare to reduce the deficit,”
according to Max Richtman, NCPSSM President/CEO.
anti-Social Security mission ignores the cold hard economic realities
facing millions of retirees, the disabled, widows and children. That’s
why the National Committee, on behalf of its millions of members and
supporters nationwide, is saying enough is enough. Now is the time to
boost Social Security benefits, not cut them. It’s the right thing to do
for our economy and America’s middle-class families and this is the
right time to do it.”
National Committee has endorsed nine different pieces of legislation
that would enhance Social Security, including S. 567 and HR 3118 which
it says, when fully phased in, would boost benefits by approximately $70
per month and adopt the more accurate consumer price index for the
a fiscally responsible way to increase and strengthen Social Security
finances we also support lifting the payroll tax cap,” the committee
news release said.
“Today, Social Security’saverage monthly benefit of just $1,269 is 90% of the total
income for 46% of America’s retirees. 58 million Americans of all ages
depend on the anti-poverty protection offered by Social Security.
Social Security will be even more important to future generations,
especially the Recession Generation which faces income loss, diminished
net worth, and high unemployment during their vital income earning
years, all of which ultimately impacts their retirement.
“Social Security’s positive economic impact
shouldn’t be ignored. American families spend $775 billion in Social
Security benefits nationwide each year, providing vital economic
stimulus to local businesses and state economies they wouldn’t have
without Social Security.
“The goal of our Boost Social Security Now campaign
is straightforward: Congress should increase Social Security benefits
now to protect the economic security of millions of American families.”
National Committee say it is a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization that
acts in the interests of its membership through advocacy, education,
services, grassroots efforts and the leadership of the Board of
Directors and professional staff. The work of the National Committee is
directed toward developing better-informed citizens and voters.
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