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Tuesday, May 26, 2015

One More Thing Congress Needs to Act On


Sure, Congress needs to act and is doing precious little besides legislating to get the wealthy and corporations yet more money or curb women's reproductive rights instead of, say, writing, proposing and passing a jobs/infrastructure bill.

Here's one more thing they haven't yet acted on but need to:

Social Security disability payments 

will be cut by a fifth 

Not only do they need to act on this or risk Americans' payments being cut, they also, this year, made 

On the first day of the new Congress, Republicans symbolically bound themselves to what is certain to be a controversial reform of the federal disability insurance program, which would probably occur near the height of the 2016 presidential campaign.

Social Security has two components, the disability insurance program and the much larger Old Age and Survivors Insurance program, for which almost all Americans become fully eligible
when they reach retirement age. Congress has historically treated them as one system, moving money between one pot and the other if one is running short on funds and the other has plenty of money.
That's the situation now, as the disability pot is expected to be empty late next year. There is enough money in the larger pot to last until 2034, or to keep both programs solvent through 2033, according to the Social Security Administration.
Here's where they made the/our situation worse, and recently:
On Tuesday, however, the House adopted a parliamentary rule that adds a procedural obstacle to reallocating the money.

If Republicans do decide that a transfer is necessary, they can change the rules again easily enough. Still, Rep. Sam Johnson (R-Tex.) said that a reallocation would be only a temporary solution that would avoid making real changes to "the fraud-plagued disability program."

"It will actually make the retirement program worse off, and it does nothing to fix the disability program," he said
in a statement.


Fraud appears limited to relatively few cases in the disability program, although it is difficult to know precisely how many beneficiaries could be working.
So not only are they doing very little but one of the few things they recently did has made their work possibly even more difficult, more complicated. Terrific.

Meanwhile, check out this information on the elderly in America lately:

Number of seniors facing hunger has doubled 

since 2001


And then, on the heels of Memorial Day when we otherwise honor our nation's Veteran's, there's this:

Bernie Sanders Rips Republicans For Cutting 

Social Security Benefits for 1 Million Disabled 

Veterans


Republicans' nerve and even hypocrisy seem to know no bounds.

So on this, as with so many things, this Congress needs to act.

And they need to do what's right for America and Americans. They need to make certain these cuts in Social Security payments don't occur, at least, and as soon as possible.

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