Mar 7, 2017

OMB Head Wants To "Reform" Social Security Disability

     From The Hill (emphasis added):
Office of Management and Budget Director Mick Mulvaney said Monday that President Trump could soon review potential reforms to Social Security and Medicare — but he stressed that the reforms under consideration wouldn’t touch payments for current beneficiaries.
Mulvaney said he plans to prepare several entitlement reform proposals for Trump after finishing the White House’s first budget outline proposal this week. Mulvaney previously said the top-line budget proposal wouldn’t address entitlements. ...
“I’ve already started to socialize the discussion around here in the West Wing about how important the mandatory spending is to the drivers of our debt,” Mulvaney told radio host Hugh Hewitt in a Monday interview. “People are starting to grab it.”
“There are ways that we can not only allow the president to keep his promise, but to help him keep his promise by fixing some of these mandatory programs.” ...
Mulvaney said Trump wasn’t likely to propose raising the age at which someone could retire and receive full entitlement benefits. Instead, he floated changes to Social Security disability payments, which Mulvaney called “one of the fastest growing and probably one of the most abused mandatory programs in the country.” ...
     I've heard the "we'll be able to get away with cutting Social Security as long as we don't touch benefits for current recipients" strategy many times before. Anybody remember that working for Republicans? I've also heard the "disability is the soft underbelly of Social Security" strategy before but the belly has always proven a lot tougher than Republicans expected. So, please proceed GOP. There's always an election coming.

18 comments:

Anonymous said...

Here it comes...been bracing for it since the election. What will these proposed changes be?

Anonymous said...

Easy. Remove the SS income tax cap. FIXED!

Anonymous said...

Why have disability when your crony buddies can lock them up in private prisons for a profit. These are the descendants of the folks who sicked the dogs on Martin Luther King. These people make Ronald Reagan and Barry Goldwater look like enlightened moderates. They want to take it all down.

Anonymous said...

Remove the income tax cap, yeah right. Despite the fact that this will be a minimal burden on people making over $125k, GOP orthodoxy says doing that will ruin the economy. Anyone on SS who voted for these clowns is a chump.

Anonymous said...

You can cut filings for SSDI by stopping Long Term Disability insurance companies from recovering SSDI back pay. Reduction is also possible by ending direct payment to representatives. The mills just cant exist if they have to go directly to the Claimant to get paid. The smaller offices would suffer some as well, but have a better chance of getting something back vs. the huge operations. No benefits cut, but a lot of applications that don't get filed.

Anonymous said...

I agree somewhat with 11:02. One often overlooked cause of increasing administrative costs and delays are long term disability carriers forcing individuals to apply for disability (often times when the claimant has no interest in doing so). Preventing much of these cases would save the Administration money and increase its efficiency. The bread and butter of most of the largest "mills" in the country are from cases from long term disability carriers.

However, I disagree with the notion that direct payment of attorneys fees really causes any undue hardship on the Administration. The Administration withholds administrative costs out of the payments.

By ending the direct pay program you would only make it massively difficult for Claimants to obtain proper representation and it would likely in effect discourage individuals from applying for benefits they are entitled to and need.

Anonymous said...

11:22 Your final paragraph is exactly what I was getting at. The opposition believes that the system if full of frauds. The way to stop those frauds from occurring is to stop them from applying in the first place. As dim as this administration may be, someone will realize that this is a "backdoor" denial system that can be laid at the feet of representatives. They can quote the SSA payout fee numbers, and Joe SixPack will agree that those dirty lawyers are fleecing the system and getting lazy people free money. It spins well with the majority of 45 supporters, even those on benefits. Because we all know everyone is a fraud on SSDI, except for me and my family.

Anonymous said...

Beware the Eye of Sauron

Anonymous said...

11:31, 9:45, and 9:29 are all right on.
Those unfamiliar with the system really believe representatives are getting rich getting disability for deadbeats who just don't want to work. The mills are already suffering and cutting back or becoming more mill like. The disability program is already difficult to navigate, and it's difficult to get disability even if you really are disabled.

Anonymous said...

As for the "administrative burden" of maintaining direct payment of fees to representatives, Charles and many of us have long advocated that SSA simply issue a past-due benefits check bearing both the names of the claimant and the representative. Personal injury insurance companies have done that for years. Any unethical rep who abuses the system can be barred from practice, just as state bars are very strict about enforcing client trust accounts--that's the easiest way for unethical practitioners to lose their licenses.

Let's address the actual issues instead of mythological problems.

Anonymous said...

Do we not already have one of the most stingy and difficult disability benefit systems in the Western world. This is all a bunch of hyped up right wing Joe McCarthy bullshit. Why don't we fight like hell employing the truth. Any society is going to have a percentage of the population who are disabled. A decent, civilized society treats them with decency. A monstrous society kills them off in one way or another. Almost every American citizen has a friend or relative that depends on this program. I have even represented the disabled offspring and grandchildren of some very wealthy families that finally want to stop supporting them and seek to get them into the system. Destroying this program will be a tribute to the short sighted greed and stupidity of the extreme right in this country. It will only pour fuel on the fire of the anger and dysfunction we are currently seeing in our society.

Anonymous said...

SSD is probably one of the most abused programs in the country. Abused by Congress for under-funding agency operations. Abused by Congressional oversight committees with an agenda cutting benefits, and now abused by Mr. Mulvaney with more misrepresentations. Something needs to be done about it alright, but we won't have a chance to do that until the next elections.

Anonymous said...

What organizations are lobbying against these reforms? Are thereally any problems firms educating the public on theses issues?

Anonymous said...

7:48 PM, you had the first 2 years of Obama to fix anything you wanted, Dem house and Dem Senate... But no, you let him piddle around with shovel ready jobs, overhauling the auto industry, and the failure known as Obamacare. Why weren't your people fixing some of these problems when they had the chance? Maybe they weren't important enough for you to care back then?

Anonymous said...

Well, I know what I am doing in 2018 and 2020. I've seen enough already.

Anonymous said...

Yeah it's the mooslem president's fault for not fixing this problem. These people neeed to go to work. They can buy I phones and ripple. Lock them up!

Anonymous said...

Yep, let's just pay the "truly disabled," whoever they are. Someone should tell Mr. Mulvaney that the right wing papers touting unsustainable growth are out of date. Currently the DI numbers are fairly stable

Anonymous said...

You Know I only come to this webpage to see what is going on with ssdi because i recieve it and have a vested intrest in it,it's my lifeline because i cant work. But to see that people that have no reason other than to hate people on ssdi in this forum says it all. This is how much republicans hate people on ssdi as if they is no possible way that they themselves can become disabled. It can happen in one second next thing you know you had a stroke, Thats why its here to help all of us even you republicans who vote against thier own vested intrests as if it will help them in life. grow up this is deadly serious stuff go to church and thank god you can work insted of collecting 1000 per month to live on. And yes if i could i would take your job and give you my disability payments in a heartbeat. Also you know why its called ssdi social security disability INSURANCE ITS BECAUSE I PAYED INTO IT FOR 35 YEARS.