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2011-06-23 digital edition

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2011-06-23 / General Stories

Senator Hutchison Unveils Plan to Save Social Security

Calls on VP Biden to Include Entitlement Reform in Budget Negotiations Hutchison Bill Ensures Solvency of Social Security Without Raising Taxes or Cutting Core Benefits

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Today, U. S. Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison (R-Texas) held a press conference to unveil her Defend & Save Social Security Act. She discussed the impending bankruptcy of Social Security and how her legislation will address the problem without raising taxes or cutting core benefits. Under current law, retirees’ monthly benefits would be cut nearly onefourth, beginning in 2036. Hutchison’s plan would ensure Social Security’s solvency by gradually increasing the retirement age (over 16 years) to 69 and instituting a modest one percent reduction in the annual cost-ofliving adjustment.

“It is impossible for anyone to have a serious conversation about ‘deficit reduction’ or to feasibly make a dent in our unsustainable deficit without addressing entitlements such as Social Security. It is critical that any serious budget negotiations put entitlement reform on the table. This is why I have sent a letter to the Vice President, urging him to incorporate my Defend and Save Social Security Act in the ongoing budget discussions and ultimately their final proposal,” said Sen. Hutchison.

“My Defend and Save Social Security plan will ensure that our nation’s retirement program is able to make good on its promises. With Social Security on a steep descent to $6.5 trillion in unfunded obligations during the next 75 years, my Defend and Save Social Security Act would secure the future of the program without raising taxes or cutting core benefits. Under current law, retirees will have their Social Security benefits cut by 23 percent in about 25 years when the Trust Fund is exhausted. Allowing current law to continue and failing to take action in advance of the guaranteed shortfall is irresponsible and endangers the financial security of all Americans. My plan involves common-sense, gradual reform that strengthens Social Security for current and future retirees,” said Sen. Hutchison.

Under Sen. Hutchison’s proposal, anyone who is currently 58 years old or older would not be affected. For everyone else, the normal retirement age would increase by three months each year, starting in 2016. It would reach 67 by 2019, 68 by 2023, and 69 by 2027. The Cost-of-livingadjustment (COLA) would be computed as is under current law, and under Hutchison’s plan, would be reduced by one percent annually. According to the Social Security Administration’s Chief Actuary, Sen. Hutchison’s proposal decreases deficits by $416 billion over the next 10 years and will subtract a total of $7.2 trillion from the national debt by 2085.

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