SOCIAL SECURITY PERSONAL SAVINGS GUARANTEE AND PROSPERITY ACT OF 2005 -- (Extensions of Remarks - April 22, 2005)
HON. PAUL RYAN
IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
THURSDAY, APRIL 21, 2005
Mr. RYAN of Wisconsin. Mr. Speaker, I rise to introduce new legislation that will ensure Social Security lives up to its promise for all Americans, now and in the future. My legislation, the Social Security Personal Savings Guarantee and Prosperity Act of 2005, will give all workers access to a more prosperous retirement through the establishment of personal savings accounts within the current Social Security system. This voluntary proposal maintains a strong safety net guaranteeing that workers would receive at least as much as Social Security promises under current law, without changing survivors' or disability benefits. Furthermore, this plan achieves full and permanent solvency for Social Security, and reduces debt and payroll taxes over the long term.
Mr. Speaker, the 2005 Social Security Trustees Report tells us that beginning in 2017, Social Security will begin to pay out more in benefits than it receives in tax revenues. Then; in 2041, the Social Security Trust Fund will be exhausted. All analysts point to changing demographics as the primary factor driving Social Security into a deeper hole every year. In 1950, there were 16 workers supporting each retiree. Now, with the number of workers supporting each recipient projected to fall from 3.3 today to 2.3 in 2025, the mission is very clear: we must act now to strengthen and sustain Social Security.
By establishing personal accounts within the Social Security system, we can give every American worker the choice of building a nest egg for his or her retirement. With personal retirement accounts, every worker will become a laborer and a capitalist earning a much higher rate of return on their payroll tax dollars than the current system can currently offer them. Furthermore, I firmly believe that there is no better way to bridge the wealth gap and decentralize the concentration of wealth in America than to adopt personal accounts like the ones I am proposing.
Mr. Speaker, this legislation not only gives workers a better deal for their retirement, but it is also a blueprint for permanent solvency for Social Security, long-term debt reduction and payroll tax relief for all American workers. This plan works to help control the growth rate of government spending and make sure the short-term Social Security surpluses are devoted to strengthening Social Security instead of other spending. Most importantly, this plan gives every worker the chance to have real wealth and become an owner in our free enterprise system.