Congressman Brad Sherman has worked to preserve Social Security, strengthen pensions and improve Medicare since first coming to Congress in 1996. His steadfast opposition to efforts to privatize Social Security and a commitment to improve Medicare benefits have earned him a 100-percent rating from the National Committee to Preserve Social Security and Medicare. Congressman Sherman's voting record is rated 100% by AARP.
"All Americans should seek a comfortable retirement including IRA's, 401(k)'s and similar accounts, said Sherman " However, any sound retirement plan starts with an inflation-adjusted lifetime annuity -- a monthly check for life that you cannot lose, and you cannot outlive. This is what Social Security provides. We should not replace a guarantee with a gamble. I will fight plans to privatize Social Security or turn Medicare into a voucher program."
Closing the Donut Hole in Prescription Drug Coverage
Previously, Medicare did not provide any coverage for prescription drug costs between $2,840 and $6,447 per year -- causing a "donut hole" or coverage gap for prescription drugs. Now, thanks to legislation supported by Congressman Sherman, recipients whose drug costs fall within the donut hole are receiving a 50% discount on brand-name prescription drugs. The out-of-pocket costs for seniors' drug costs falling in the donut hole will be further reduced incrementally until it is completely eliminated in 2020.
The Republican budget plan would reinstate the donut hole. It would also repeal the new provision that provides free annual checkups without co-pays.
Congressman Sherman Fighting to Protect Medicare
In April, the Republican Majority in the House of Representatives passed a radical plan to eliminate Medicare as we know it and replace it with a voucher program. Seniors would use their own money, along with a government voucher to purchase insurance from private insurance companies. Congressman Sherman strongly opposes efforts to create a "voucher" system that effectively wipes out Medicare's guaranteed health care benefits and would increase the average senior citizen's costs by $6,300 per year, according to the Joint Economic Committee.
New Threats to Social Security
There are new proposals in Congress to privatize Social Security. These plans would cut future Social Security benefits and divert these savings to fund new private accounts. Because these plans would divert massive sums from the Social Security Trust Fund, it would leave the program in a deep financial hole, and likely lead to cuts in benefits.
Sherman will continue to fight against any plan that privatizes Social Security or turns Medicare into a voucher program.
"Social Security belongs to the people who contribute, not the government--it must not be hijacked to pay the federal debt. The money put in should be protected and used only for Social Security," Sherman added.