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Public Statements

Concurrent Budget Resolution on the Budget, Fiscal Year 2014

Floor Speech

By:
Date:
Location: Washington, DC

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Mr. JOHNSON of Wisconsin. Madam President, I would call up my amendment No. 213.

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Mr. JOHNSON of Wisconsin. Madam President, this is a very simple amendment. It recognizes I think what most of us recognize; that is, the entitlement programs, Social Security and Medicare, are the primary drivers of our debt and deficit. So it is a very simple amendment. It establishes a budget point of order that any budget resolution that is brought forward that does not count or does not prepare for a 75-year solvency for both Medicare and Social Security would be considered out of order.

We in the next 20 years will be paying out $5.1 trillion in benefits in excess of what we are bringing in in terms of dedicated revenue through the payroll tax. The unfunded liabilities of Social Security alone are $20.5 trillion. For Medicare the unfunded liability is $42.8 trillion. Those programs must be reformed so they are saved for future generations.

Again, I would hope everybody would support a budget point of order for any budget that does not have a 75-year solvency for Medicare and Social Security.

Mrs. MURRAY. Madam President, Social Security and Medicare have played a very critical role in providing a foundation of financial security and health care for millions upon millions of Americans over the decades. Democrats are committed to preserving and protecting them. When analyzing the solvency of these programs, it must be over more than just a 10-year budget window; we must measure them over a 75-year window.

This amendment, however, does nothing to protect the integrity of the Medicare and Social Security trust funds, and it does not do anything to improve their solvency. We should have a debate about the solvency of these programs but not on the budget resolution.

I urge my colleagues to oppose this amendment and ask for the yeas and nays.

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