Steven Rosenfeld at Salon finds it remarkable that at the Senate Finance Committee hearing last week on "America's retirement crisis" none of the Republicans felt that Social Security benefits couldn't be increased, at least for the poorest Americans.
I have to point out that Republicans are cutting food stamps and cutting large numbers of people off unemployment benefits this Christmas season, hardly a sign that they have grown a heart. Andrew Biggs, who testified at the behest of the Republicans at the hearing, was willing to accept higher Social Security benefits for the poor only at the cost of means testing Social Security benefits, the long standing dream of Republicans to explicitly turn Social Security into a "welfare" program that they can hate more openly.
I think that running on a plan to increase Social Security benefits would be a winner for Democrats in 2014 and 2016 but I'm sorry to say that don't see that sort of audacity in the Democratic party. I hope I'm wrong.