The issue of Social Security affects all of us and dealing with it is an important part of my work in Congress.
It is an honor to represent two communities—Sun City and Sun City West—that are among the finest retirement communities in our nation, and I have also been entrusted with the significant responsibility of working to preserve our Social Security Trust Fund. It is a fund that if ignored, will remain on a dangerous course towards bankruptcy. Currently, entitlement programs, including Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, Unemployment Compensation, and Veteran’s benefits, consume approximately half of every tax dollar that the federal government spends. The Social Security Trust Fund is no longer an actuarial fund, where those paying in money receive it back at retirement. Instead, present benefits are being paid out of payroll taxes from workers. Almost no surplus is being saved or invested.
If we continue on this path, in approximately 20 years we will find Social Security on the verge of bankruptcy. It is critical that we phase in an optional personal investment component to Social Security. We should not reduce benefits to Social Security recipients who want to continue to work. Ultimately, if we do not maintain a balanced federal budget, and begin to phase in these items, we break faith with Americans in their twilight years. The protection of Social Security is vital for America’s senior citizens.