A friend of mine lives in Ohio and is lucky enough to be represented in Congress by a truly progressive fighter, Sen. Sherrod Brown. Here’s the letter he sent to her the other day in response to her letter (I’ve replaced her name for privacy reasons with “Constituent”).
Thank you for getting in touch with me regarding potential reforms to Social Security.
Social Security, combined with Medicare, forms the bedrock of retirement security for millions of Americans. I oppose any efforts to privatize, reduce benefits, or raise the retirement age for Social Security. Such actions would pull the rug out from workers and seniors who’ve planned their retirement around earned benefits.
Contrary to rumors otherwise, Social Security is not going bankrupt or “belly up.” According to the most recent trustees’ report, the program can pay full survivor and retirement benefits until 2034, at which point revenues will still cover around 79 percent of obligations. Congress can and should take steps to bolster the long-term solvency of the program. But solvency should not be justification for harmful cuts.
I support strengthening the program to ensure adequate benefits for participants. I believe we should change the way Social Security calculates its cost-of-living-adjustments to better reflect price changes in the everyday items seniors purchase, like prescription drugs or healthcare. And I support lifting the current taxable income cap of $127,200 to improve the solvency of the program and ensure a fairer system for paying into it.
These issues are extremely important to me, and I appreciate your input. As Congress considers any reforms to Social Security, I will keep your thoughts in mind.
Thank you again for contacting me.
United States Senator