Social Security

Don’t Scrap Our Social Security

Even though Republican politicians claim they want to preserve Social Security, they actually don’t.

People across New Hampshire rely on this vital program that has provided economic support and dignity to seniors, people with disabilities, and children of deceased workers for decades, but Republican members of Congress have a plan to change and jeopardize the program.

Here are some facts about Social Security. First, more than 90% of Americans 65 and over receive Social Security. More than 4 million children receive benefits due to a parent's death or disability, and a deceased worker's spouse collects if there are children under the age of 18.  Millions rely on it to survive. While almost half of all seniors would be poor without it, women would be hurt even more than men, because women earn lower wages and generally live longer than men. More than half of all elderly women would live in poverty.

This would have an enormous economic impact on middle class families with aging parents. Already struggling adult children would have to care for themselves, their kids, and their parents.  Without Social Security, families would have to make devastating decisions about living arrangements, health care, education, transportation, etc., as they tried to divide resources between the young and the old. Also, reducing future benefits or privatizing Social Security would not be a "shared sacrifice.” As former White House Press Secretary Dee Dee Myers wrote in Vanity Fair, "The top 1% of Americans now take home nearly a quarter of all income and control more than 40% of the country's wealth—roughly the same as the bottom 90%." Not exactly shared sacrifice. Therefore, we must stop Paul Ryan and Republican politicians from dismantling this program. 

Social Security will have problems paying at today's rate around 2034, but it can be fixed if the Congress would do what Reagan did in 1983—fix it. Raise the cap to make Social Security sustainable. Right now, people who earn under $118,500 pay tax on every single dollar they earn. People who earn over that do not pay on every dollar, just the first $118,500. It is not fair for lower-income people to pay on all of their earnings while the wealthy pay only on the first $118,500.

As President Roosevelt said about Social Security in 1941, “We put those payroll contributions there so as to give the contributors a legal, moral, and political right to collect their pensions and their unemployment benefits. With those taxes in there, no damn politician can ever scrap my social security program.”  We need to tell our leaders again--don't scrap our social security program!


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