Texan4Hillary offers his perspective as a movement progressive activist.
Progressives have been launching a very aggressive campaign on protesting Social Security and today some good news. Senator Reid, who won great praise for defending Social Security as a program that works, is solvent and must not be touched, today came out with a stronger statement. In response to the hundreds of thousands of people petitioning him to stand tough on the issue and not allow the austerity craze have its way with Social Security, Reid today vowed the program would not be touched as long as he remains Majority Leader. Period.
“As long as I’m the Majority Leader, I’m going to do everything within my legislative powers to prevent privatizing or eliminating Social Security,” Reid said. “I’ll simply say it’s off the table.”…
Reid’s been a pretty staunch defender of Social Security, but this statement goes a bit further than previous ones. Most recently, on Meet the Press, he said he wouldn’t be a part of any effort to undermine the program. But now, he’s taken privatization and raising the retirement age off the table.
That’s significant given a fairly broad consensus among conservative Democrats and Republicans that the retirement age should be bumped up. With Republicans in control of the House, the Senate could end up being the firewall protecting Social Security from those sorts of cuts.
In recent weeks, House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-VA) has made knocking Reid for his opposition to Social Security cuts into a sort of political sport. But Reid’s right that Social Security will be solvent for years into the future, and could be made indefinitely solvent with a minor payroll tax hike on high-income earners. House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) last week walked back his call to raise the retirement age to 70, pending a full Congressional debate on that question.
Kudos to Reid!
Not even Speaker Boehner has backed off upping the retirement age. We must be vocal on this and not give up. It’s too important for our nation and our future.
PCCC (Progressive Change Campaign Committee) is collecting stories about Social Security and how it helps you. They will share these stories in ads, with congress members etc as the campaign ramps up. So share ’em!