Hiding Behind Social Security

The GOP’s Latest Bogus Excuse to Raise Taxes on YOU In Order to Protect Millionaires

The GOP is not shy about the fact they will absolutely raise on taxes 160 MILLION working Americans if that’s what it takes to protect just 345,000 millionaires. They’ve said they’d do so — repeatedly — and they voted to do so last week and will likely do so again tomorrow.

This strategy, however, hasn’t worked very well for them, with Sen. John McCain stating yesterday that Democrats are winning on taxes. So, first they brought up their pledgemaster, Grover Norquist, to say a $1,000 tax increase on 160 MILLION working Americans would somehow not actually count as a tax increase, at least according to the oath Republicans have sworn to him. And now after that didn’t work, Republicans have come up with a new plan: hide behind Social Security.

Let’s review the Republican record on Social Security.

The GOP is the Party Out to Get Social Security

Here are just the most recent attempts of the GOP to effectively destroy Social Security.

The President’s Payroll Tax Cut Plan Will Not Harm Social Security. Period.

The long and short of the GOP argument is that by cutting the payroll tax that funds Social Security, we are undermining the solvency of Social Security. That would be true, except for the fact that the plan explicitly replaces every cent of the payroll tax cut with funds from the government’s general fund. And Democrats even pay for their plan by asking millionaires to pay a small surtax, meaning that the general funds replacing the payroll tax would also not add to the deficit. Republicans have of course rejected this plan.

Today, Social Security’s actuary wrote a letter confirming that the payroll tax cut plan would have no impact on Social Security:

The blessing is being used by supporters of the tax holiday to try to convince members worried it weakens Social Security. That perception is especially strong in the House GOP conference.

Actuary Stephen Goss sent a Tuesday letter to Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner and Budget Director Jack Lew giving his thumbs up.

“We estimate that the enactment of this bill would have a negligible effect on the financial status of the Old Age and Survivors Insurance and Disability Insurance (OASDI) program in both the near term and the long term. We estimate that the projected level of the OASI and DI Trust Funds would be unaffected by enactment of this provision,” the letter states.

The letter notes that the 3.1-percent rate reduction in payroll taxes collected from employees is offset by a transfer of funds from the general Treasury.

As Sen. Bob Casey (D-PA), the Senate sponsor of the plan, noted today, this pretty much destroys the GOP’s latest bogus excuse to not support the payroll tax cut extension and expansion:

Those who would oppose my legislation now have one less excuse to block this much needed boost for the vast majority of Americans.

IN TWO SENTENCES: While Republicans claim to be the protectors Social Security, they are actually the ones that are constantly looking for ways to privatize, cut, or otherwise destroy the program. It seems Republicans will try and come up with any excuse they can to justify their willingness to raise taxes on 160 MILLION working Americans in order to protect just 345,000 millionaires from having to pay their fair share.

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Advocacy Team