Take a look at the views of the Republican Presidential candidates on Social Security:
- Jeb Bush: Increase full retirement age, possibly to 70
- Ben Carson: Wants people who don't need the money to opt out of receiving Social Security
- Chris Christie: Increase full retirement age to 69 and means-test benefits
- Ted Cruz: Partially privatize Social Security, increase full retirement age and cut cost of living adjustment
- Carly Fiorina: Increase full retirement age
- Jim Gilmore: Put a cap on benefits; praised George W. Bush for proposing partial privatization of Social Security
- Lindsey Graham: Increase full retirement age to 70 and cut benefits for some recipients
- Mike Huckabee: Does not favor Social Security changes.
- Bobby Jindal: Partially privatize Social Security
- John Kasich: Partially privatize Social Security
- George Pataki: Increase full retirement age
- Rand Paul: Increase full retirement age to 70 and means test benefits
- Marco Rubio: Increase full retirement age by one year; also believes that benefits should "grow more slowly"
- Rick Santorum: Privatize Social Security, increase full retirement age, means test benefits
- Donald Trump: Does not favor Social Security changes
- Scott Walker: Increase full retirement age
Every Republican Presidental candidate other than Carson, Huckabee and Trump supports either raising full retirement age or partially privatizing Social Security. Carson may want such changes but he hasn't yet spoken on Social Security issues in any meaningful way. Encouraging people to voluntarily forego their Social Security benefits? Few people can afford to do so and far fewer would do so. I think he'll be asked specific questions about Social Security in the near future.
What's going to happen when the Republican race starts narrowing down? If Trump remains the front runner, we can expect to see negative ads from his opponents. How does Trump respond? Social Security seems to be a wedge issue he could use to attack almost any of his Republican opponents. Raising full retirement age and partially privatizing Social Security may be popular ideas with big Republican donors but these ideas are unpopular with rank and file Republicans. The polling we have shows 62% of Republicans in favor of increasing Social Security benefits and 74% of Republicans willing to preserve Social Security even if it means raising taxes. Only 26% of Republicans favor increasing full retirement age to 70. An intra-party debate on Social Security could be devastating for Republicans.
Further, at the so-called kid's table debate last month, Ms. Fiorina vowed, to great applause, that she would not replace a single retiring federal employee. Though not as extremely stated, that general sentiment was echoed by other Republican candidates. Such an approach to maintaining the federal work force would wreak havoc on SSA's ability to carry out its mission.
Although I never considered myself a Republican, I could actually get behind a plan to increase the retirement age to 70 if the following conditions were met:
1. Social Security Disability would still be obtainable based on the current grid rules;
2. Social Security Administration would be properly funded so that it wouldn't take 2.5 years to get on disability; and
3. The age would be raised immediately so that the baby boomers would not be able to retire at age 66 while Gen X and the Millenials who will be supporting them have to work longer.
Reasoning for this is simple. The Social Security system was designed to act as a safety net for those who are too old to work. Benefits started at age 65 which was right around the life expectancy of Americans in the 1940s. People now live longer and are healthier than those in the 1940s. Therefore, it makes sense that we work longer. But we also know that there are those who will not be able to work in their 60s and they should be able to get on disability benefits.
Furthermore, most people I work for have no retirement planning. They retire thinking that they will live off their Social Security benefits and are in for a shock when they find out how little that amount is. It would quite frankly be better for them to work longer so that they have money to live off of.
And no, this will never happen because the baby boomers won't allow it. (for the record, I am a young baby boomer who barring disability plans to work until at least age 70)
no one is touching social security until at least 2025 the problem is way too far away for us to touch now. You have to search pretty far down on a candidate's platform to find this information b/c its not an election issue. We don't preventatively fix problems in this country we only respond to crisis.
@1:28 you are wrong about life expectancy. Life expectancy has only increased because the much lower rate of infant mortality has boosted the overall life expectancy number. Life expectancy of those who reach adulthood is roughly the same as it has been since Social Security was established.
At least there are three Republicans using brains
" At least there are three Republicans using brains ".
I would not go that far.
They all look like buffons and fools.
Frankly all of the republitard goon candidates scaree people
NONE OF THEM WILL NOT ELECTED.
There is chance Ms.Clinton won't get the Democrapic nomination
and Bernie Sanders will be againest Donald trump.
Stranger things have happened,
Jeb Bush: Increase full retirement age, possibly to 70
Ben Carson: Wants people who don't need the money to opt out of receiving Social Security
Chris Christie: Increase full retirement age to 69 and means-test benefits
Ted Cruz: Partially privatize Social Security, increase full retirement age and cut cost of living adjustment
Carly Fiorina: Increase full retirement age
Jim Gilmore: Put a cap on benefits; praised George W. Bush for proposing partial privatization of Social Security
Lindsey Graham: Increase full retirement age to 70 and cut benefits for some recipients
Mike Huckabee: Does not favor Social Security changes.
Bobby Jindal: Partially privatize Social Security
John Kasich: Partially privatize Social Security
George Pataki: Increase full retirement age
Rand Paul: Increase full retirement age to 70 and means test benefits
Marco Rubio: Increase full retirement age by one year; also believes that benefits should "grow more slowly"
Rick Santorum: Privatize Social Security, increase full retirement age, means test benefits
Donald Trump: Does not favor Social Security changes
Scott Walker: Increase full retirement age
@5:33 while you are correct that life expectancy has increased due to the decrease in childhood mortality, It does not explain the while picture. An adult who reached age 50 in 2007 could expect to live 6 years longer than one who turned 50 in 1950.
Any attempt to further means test social security changes it from an entitlement program you get something from because you paid in and met the qualifiers for to a welfare program, which would be the beginning of the end of it. It's allure, if it can be said to have one, is that the program was designed to ignore class. Means testing to save it is essentially a back door way of killing it. Raising the retirement age is an idea considered valid by healthy people who use their minds over their bodies to earn a living. Working till 70 should be an option or choice, not the floor for deciding when to leave the workforce. Funding the program to cover longer life expectancy is simple enough, remove the caps on the wage ceiling. Put another bend point in the comp to give higher wage earners a return for those added taxes that doesn't clobber the actuarial rates.
Life expectancy has increased partly due to lower infant and child mortality and partially due to adults living longer. However, most of the latter increase is due to longer lifespans of high-income people, who are not the ones who rely on Social Security. People who want to raise the retirement age mostly just want to cut benefits, and life expectancy increases are just an excuse, I think.
Most people would be willing to pay a higher payroll tax to keep benefits where they are or increase them. Raising the cap is OK with me, and I think it should be brought up as an alternative to cutting benefits, but I'd be fine with keeping the cap where it is and raising the OASI tax if and when needed as a compromise.
Also, increased life expectancy does not necessarily mean greater functionality during the years the medical vocational guidelines are relevant (mostly age 50 or older)? Mortality tables don't tell you how well our living senior population is functioning, vis-a-vis the requirements of the competitive full-time workplace.
The genuinely relevant questions are 1) How have workplace requirements changed since the grids were adopted, and 2) Given those changes, how do the normal effects of aging, lack of educational attainment, lack of skills etc. effect the ability to perform substantial work?
Why are the people that paid into the system now required to prove they are financially entitled to the benefit they paid for (if this becomes a means tested program)? Once again, we punish the producers and reward those that did not plan for their future. Are they offering to give all the money the higher earners paid in back if they are found not to be "means tested" eligible? Could a private insured get away with this (changing the rules after the fact) and telling the potential recipient they cannot receive the benefit they contracted for?
As 10:11 pointed out, increased life expectancy does NOT mean that the elderly have maintained functionality. I am a 68 year-old baby boomer who earned 6 athletic letters in college, was a military officer, have always worked out, and I am still working despite drawing SSA retirement. Despite having only slight arthritis and medically controlled hypertension, I can still do most of the tasks needed in my profession. However, I am being forced to reluctantly admit that my functionality, both physical and mental, is gradually declining. My income-earning capacity is decreasing, and I'm probably in the top 5-10% of my age cohort as far as fitness is concerned. If I were not drawing SSA retirement, I would be gradually descending into poverty.
1:28 suggested people in their late 60's could apply for disability. This is unrealistic! Although us 60-somethings cannot meet the sometimes incredibly high standards for disability, we do develop functional deficits. If the age for full retirement is raised, there should be some type of increasing partial retirement benefits so seniors will not be relegated to poverty. Those who say the age should be raised to 70 are usually younger, healthy people, or if older, they are the ones whose work lives have been benign and perhaps not as demanding as is the case with most laborers.
I know a number of people in their 60s and 70s. I also know several people who have attempted to find work in their late 50s, early 60s. One of them, in her late 50s, looking younger and with a long work history, is finding that ageism is alive and well. The other, now in her mid-60s, tried for several years to find suitable work. Again, ageism was a barrier. She is now on Social Security. I myself fell out of the work force in my 50s due to chronic medical problems and am now in my early 60s and on SSD. Oh, and in addition to the medical issue I got approved on (after 2 and a half years)I developed several other severe medical conditions. While I have no scientific evidence to this, it appears from my own experience and that of other people I know, that once one has one bad medical issue, other chronic conditions follow. The Republicans who are wanting to destroy Social Security are adhering to a cruelly delusional optimism that we will all be healthy seniors into our late 60s. I suspect that they just plain don't want anybody but rich folks like themselves to have a decent old age. And, yeah, if you are mentally and physically able to work as long as you want, that should be an option. But NOT a mandate. The rest of us wear out and deserve to live out our lives without the additional struggle of worrying about work.
you don't have a K with the State, tho, bruh
I am the one who said I would raise to retirement to age 70 if disability standards remain the same. I understand that many people can not work in their 60s (or 50s for that matter) that is why the disability grid need to stay in place and the system needs to be sped up. I would keep early retirement age at 62. Raising taxes is not going to happen and even if it did, it would fall on the younger generations to pay more so that the baby boomers can have their full retirement benefits. Not what I want for my children.
It comes down to whether you are okay letting our seniors and disabled suffer severe poverty...and knowing that it might one day be you or a family member doing the suffering. These benefits are typically barely enough to meet basic needs. Cut those benefits and you are making it impossible for many Americans to meet basic needs. I'm not okay with any politician who proposes cuts to these benefits.
For an individual who first becomes eligible for old-age insurance benefits or disability insurance benefits in 2015, or who dies in 2015 before becoming eligible for benefits, his/her PIA will be the sum of:
(a) 90 percent of the first $826 of his/her average indexed monthly earnings, plus
(b) 32 percent of his/her average indexed monthly earnings over $826 and through $4,980, plus
(c) 15 percent of his/her average indexed monthly earnings over $4,980.
The formula can be adjusted to increase benefits to lower earners while reducing the benefit to much higher earners. By doing so, a gradual increase in the retirement age to 69 or 70 could be done in a way that only impacts benefits for higher earners, while still preserving those benefits for lower earners and all earners as well, albeit lower for the wealthier. Accompany this with removal of the cap on earnings subject to tax and the overall problem, if there really is one, is solved. Sometimes, there has to be give on both sides. If it can be done in a way that mainly only impacts the ones who can best afford it, why not do it.
a reasonable proposal based on actual facts and conditions on the ground? men, take him away!
Why is Gen X being screwed by the Baby Boomers? Where do they get off raising our retirement age again and again? They could have added a .5% tax increase and handled this years ago. Now I have to work till 70! This is BS! Boomers ruined this country and now want to take it out on the rest of us. Soylent Green!!!!
@7:11, can I send your proposal to my senator?
I agree there is no written contract, but there is a promise made in exchange for the FICA tax. For years, the disability statement was sent telling those that paid in how much they would get whether retired or disabled. Social security should just drop the pretense and call it a tax. I notice that the only federal program that is an actual "entitlement" is the only program under attack. No one is talking about reducing or eliminating welfare, food stamps, etc
5:40: No one is talking about reducing or eliminating welfare or food stamps? Have you read a paper or watched the news in the last year? This is a main talking-point among conservatives!
to 9:52am: Baby boomers have paid more in taxes, and had a higher retirement age, since 1983 when Reagan's compromise was put into effect. We are not taking from younger generations, we paid into the program and now expect to draw benefits out -- it is an insurance, after all. Just as you expect your house insurance to pay if you have a fire that demolishes part of your house, social security is paid upon certain events happening (retirement, disability, death).
You hit the nail on the head. Eliminating the cap is the counter to the raising age/mean testing that most republicans want.
Setting a 4th tier would solve almost the entire issue:
d) 5 percent of his/her average indexed monthly earnings over the current cap.
Unfortunately most voters are not even aware of this. They have bought the Republican premise hook, line, and sinkers - without knowing the alternatives. Usually, once they learn of the alternative (eliminating the cap), about 85% prefer this approach over raising the age or mean testing.
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