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Issue Position: Retirement Issues

Issue Position

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Issue Position: Retirement Issues

It is essential that we meet our obligations not only to America's senior citizens, but also to tomorrow's generation of retirees. Seniors have paid into the Social Security system their entire lives. We must honor our promise to them, while retaining that promise for the future.

Although the Social Security system is now running surpluses, its board of trustees projects that the trust funds will be depleted by 2037. By 2025 the number of people age 65 and over is expected to grow by at least 75 percent, while the number of workers coming into the workforce is expected to grow at only 13 percent.

I was an original cosponsor of the Social Security and Medicare Lock-Box Act, which passed the House on February 13th, 2001. This bill preserves the Social Security surplus. For 30 years, Social Security surpluses have been used to mask spending increases in programs unrelated to Social Security. Surpluses in the Social Security Trust Funds will total $2.6 trillion over the next 10 years.

These surpluses will be saved for Social Security reform and will be used to reduce debt held by the public until Social Security reform is enacted.

In addition to preserving Social Security, Congress must add a responsible prescription drug benefit to Medicare. The rising cost of prescription drugs has put an enormous burden on our most vulnerable population. We need to make sure our seniors don't have to choose between paying for food and paying for life-saving medication.

I am committed to preserving the benefits that seniors in America have counted on their whole lives, and preserving these benefits into the future.

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