Mr. GENE GREEN of Texas. Mr. Speaker, I rise today to support one of our Nation's crowning achievements, the Social Security program, and the 55 million Americans who benefit from this critical program. Since 1935, Social Security has kept its promise to America's seniors that after a lifetime of working and playing by the rules, you should not have to live in poverty when you retire.
I was happy to see last week that after 2 years, our Nation's seniors will receive a well-deserved cost-of-living-adjustment increase of 3.6 percent. The American people should be concerned, however, that the recently announced COLA increase would effectively disappear if this Congress decides to adopt a chained CPI formula for Social Security. The chained Consumer Price Index would lower benefits by $112 billion for current and future beneficiaries over the next 10 years.
I support efforts to reduce our Federal deficit, but we should not balance the Nation's budget on the backs of seniors, the disabled, and children. I call on our colleagues to stand with America's seniors and support Social Security. It's not a Ponzi scheme, as some candidates for President allege; and let's celebrate the 3.6 percent for our seniors.