From a piece that Nancy Altman (who is being considered for nomination to become the next Commissioner of Social Security) wrote in early 2011, suggesting what President Obama might say in his State of the Union address:
Social Security is the most efficient, universal, and secure part of the retirement income system. It is often the only disability insurance and life insurance protection that workers and their families have. It returns in benefits more than 99 cents of every dollar collected -- administrative costs much lower than those found in the private sector. At a time when employer-provided traditional pensions are disappearing, Social Security should be increased, not decreased. Its modest shortfall -- just 0.6 percent of GDP -- is highly affordable. The program's increased cost is an appropriate and modest response to an aging population.
If President Obama and his fellow Democrats take this route, they can use the support of the American people to lead a powerful long-term movement not just to eliminate Social Security's projected shortfall through increased revenue, but to push for higher benefits, particularly for those most disadvantaged, and for new benefits, such as paid parental leave, as the Social Security programs of many other nations provide.