Standing with Seniors!

There’s a big brouhaha in Congress about how we have to cut Medicare benefits and even transfer our Social Security system into the hands of private bankers and money movers. Some people in Congress, including my opponent, say that America’s broke, and the system is too broken to fix. That only private enterprise is smart enough to take care of the “crisis.”

That’s an old trick of using fear to line the pockets of the wealthy while gutting vital services. And it’s part and parcel of the negative view of America – and the world – embraced by modern Republicans.

Instead of that, I say we should band together to preserve the wonderful institutions that provide such hope and comfort to our senior citizens, to orphan children, to the infirm in America with nowhere else to go. Sure, Medicare and Social Security aren’t perfect, and we should fix what needs fixing. But that doesn’t mean we throw the baby out with the bathwater.

As your representative in Congress, I’ll stand by the promise we made to our seniors that we will never abandon them after all they’ve done for our country. We’ll leave the broken promises to the broken party of my opponent.

Unlike him, I will fight any proposal to switch Medicare to a private system, or cut Medicare funding. Instead, I’ll look for ways to reduce healthcare costs and streamline the claims process for providers. Thanks in part to The Patient Care Act, we’ve already strengthened The Medicare Trust Fund, but there is still much work to do before we can reign in the increasing cost of Medicare while providing the good care our seniors deserve.

As with Medicare, most agree that the Social Security system needs to be revamped in order to work better within the Federal Budget. Some say we should do this by raising the retirement age. I disagree – and I’m sure most people over 65 would join me. Given the constant shifts in the global financial market, there is no guarantee that wealth accumulated in youth will last throughout life when invested in private banks. That is why I support an abolition of the cap on the amount a person can pay into Social Security.

I offer a few alternatives. First, we should stop members of Congress in both parties from raiding the Social Security Trust Fund for pet projects. We need to stop Congress from balancing the budget by looting the Social Security fund. And we should raise the ceiling on income subject to Social Security taxes. This year the cap for Social Security taxes for individual income is $117,000. Even a modest increase in that amount would provide enough taxes to save the system for years to come, reduce the deficit, and allow seniors in America to obtain a decent standard of living. What could possibly be wrong with that? Nothing!