House GOP Panel’s Budget Proposal Would “Destroy Social Security as We Know It”

A panel comprised of three-quarters of the Home Republican caucus launched a finances proposal on Wednesday that may increase the Social Safety retirement age — cutting benefits across the board—whereas additional privatizing Medicare and slashing taxes for the wealthy, a plan that Democratic lawmakers and progressive advocacy teams mentioned is a transparent assertion of the GOP’s warped priorities forward of a critical spending fight this fall.

The proposal outlined by the 175-member Republican Examine Committee (RSC), led by Rep. Kevin Hern (R-Okla.), would progressively increase Social Safety’s full retirement age—the age at which persons are eligible for full Social Safety advantages — to 69, up from the current level of 67 for these born in 1960 or later.

Nancy Altman, the president of Social Security Works, said the RSC finances would “destroy Social Safety as we all know it,” utilizing a “modest shortfall” that’s more than a decade away to justify lowering advantages for hundreds of thousands.

“These adjustments would remodel Social Safety from an earned insurance coverage profit, which replaces wages misplaced within the occasion of previous age, incapacity, or loss of life, right into a subsistence-level welfare profit,” mentioned Altman, who famous that the RSC “guidelines out any choices for elevating income, resembling requiring billionaires to contribute even a penny extra.”

At present, simply the primary $160,200 of wage earnings are topic to Social Safety’s payroll tax, permitting the wealthy to stop contributing to the program early each year.

The GOP’s refusal to drive the rich to place extra of their earnings into this system “leaves profit cuts as the one ‘resolution,’” mentioned Altman.

“In different phrases, they wish to minimize advantages now to keep away from chopping them later, which isn’t an answer in any respect. Certainly, the finances will enhance the variety of employees who can have no means to retire whereas sustaining their lifestyle,” she added. “The RSC plan would make it particularly arduous for People so disabled that they’ll now not work to say their earned Social Safety, and much simpler for the federal government to take these advantages away.”

Removed from elevating taxes on the wealthy, the RSC finances calls for enormous tax cuts by proposing a everlasting extension of the person tax provisions of the 2017 Trump-GOP tax legislation. The Congressional Finances Workplace has estimated that such a transfer would add $2.5 trillion to the federal deficit over the subsequent decade.

“The biggest group of Home Republicans simply launched a finances that calls for enormous tax cuts for the super-rich and elevating the Social Safety retirement age, a profit minimize for hundreds of thousands of People,” Rep. Don Beyer (D-Va.), a member of the Home’s chief tax-writing committee, wrote on Twitter.

The RSC finances additionally targets Medicare with a “premium help mannequin” that may subsidize non-public insurance coverage, successfully transforming Medicare into a voucher program — an thought beforehand superior by former Home Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wis.).

Altman identified that the plan comprises a “notably merciless provision” that “would drive incapacity beneficiaries to attend 5 lengthy years (as an alternative of the present two, which is already too lengthy) earlier than turning into eligible for Medicare advantages.”

“Outrageously, this alteration would deprive a number of the most medically susceptible folks in America of healthcare,” mentioned Altman. “This provision alone would inevitably result in extra medical bankruptcies and elevated homelessness.”

The GOP proposal additionally calls for work necessities for “all federal profit packages” and sides with the pharmaceutical industry in calling for a repeal of Inflation Reduction Act provisions aimed toward decreasing prescription drug prices.

“The ink is barely dry on the Bipartisan Finances Settlement and Home Republicans are already reneging on the deal and undercutting their very own speaker,” Rep. Brendan Boyle (D-Pa.), the highest Democrat on the Home Finances Committee, mentioned in a press release, referring to the lately authorized debt ceiling measure that units topline spending ranges.

“What’s worse, Republicans are trying to renege on our sacred promise to American employees and seniors by renewing their assaults on Social Safety and Medicare,” mentioned Boyle. “It’s astounding that the overwhelming majority of Home Republicans help this backwards and excessive finances, however, after they manufactured a default disaster to attempt to drive merciless cuts, I assume we shouldn’t be shocked.”

“Finances Committee Democrats will be sure that each American household is aware of that Home Republicans wish to drive People to work longer for much less, increase households’ prices, weaken our nation, and shrink our financial system — all whereas losing billions of {dollars} on extra favors to particular pursuits and handouts to the ultra-wealthy,” Boyle added.

Whereas Home Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) will not be a member of the RSC, he has additionally signaled plans to pursue cuts to Social Safety within the coming months by organising a bipartisan “fee” that may suggest adjustments to this system.

“Republicans understand how politically poisonous their plans to intestine Social Safety and Medicare are, so they’re begging Democrats to share the blame,” Altman mentioned Wednesday. “Not a single Democrat ought to take the bait. As an alternative, they need to struggle to guard and broaden Social Safety and Medicare, and pay for it by requiring the rich to pay their fair proportion. Then, let the American folks resolve which plan they like.”

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