Friday, December 21, 2012

What you can do to prevent Social Security cuts

Franklin D. Roosevelt signing the Social Security Act. 

A lot of smoke and fog is swirling around the budget talks that will continue in Washington after Christmas, but one thing is clear: Cuts to Social Security benefits are on the table.

A majority of Democrats in the House say they will not vote for any budget deal that cuts Social Security benefits. But it's horrifying to think any lawmaker, let alone a Democrat, would even consider it. And House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi said she's open to it.

Maybe they think they can sneak cuts by the voters under the pretense it's a technical fix: The so-called "chained CPI." Rep. Marcia Fudge, an Ohio Democrat, explained on her Facebook page:
Let’s call it for what it is; the chained CPI index is a reduction in Social Security benefits over time, a benefit older Americans earned through a lifetime of hard work. The notion that seniors need less of an increase because they can reduce their living expenses is out of touch with reality. Health care costs consume a disproportionate share of their meager income and those costs continue to rise faster than inflation.  Moreover, since Social Security benefits do not contribute one dime to the national debt, they have no place in deficit reduction negotiations. I will not throw America’s seniors over the cliff to avoid the fiscal cliff.
Lawmakers and the White House need to hear from you. Here are some things you can do:
  • Sign a statement here that says cuts to Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid benefits are unacceptable.
  • Sign a petition here.
  • Call your representatives (you can do it here) and tell them you strongly oppose any cuts to the Big 3.
  • Call the White House Comment Line: 202-456-1111 or email or visit:
  • Join an action against cuts. You can see if there's one near you at The Action.
  • Tell friends, family and neighbors that Social Security cuts are being considered as a way to shrink the deficit though Social Security doesn't contribute a penny to it.