Congresswoman Mazie K. Hirono (HI-02) released the following statement today in celebration of Social Security's 77th birthday:
"Seventy-seven years ago today, when a majority of older Americans struggled to simply survive, President Franklin D. Roosevelt took a bold step and signed the Social Security Act into law. This landmark legislation is a promise to our kupuna that we will help them retire with dignity.
"I've seen the power of this promise firsthand. My own 88-year-old mother, who lives with us, paid into Social Security throughout her working years and now it's a lifeline for her. More than 177,000 seniors in Hawaii rely on Social Security today.
"But on this anniversary, Social Security is under attack again as some in Washington try to balance the budget on the backs of our kupuna.
"Here's one thing we could do to strengthen Social Security without raising the retirement age: scrap the cap on Social Security payments. Today, once people make more than $110,100, they don't pay any more into Social Security. So millionaires and billionaires pay a much smaller piece of their income into Social Security than everyone else.
"In my mother, I see firsthand the importance of a secure retirement. It is one of our nation's basic values: If you work hard and play by the rules, you should be able to retire with dignity.
"We must do everything we can to protect this solemn promise we've made to our kupuna."