Obama should not compromise on Social Security

Updated
Virgilio Marquina and other protesters rally together outside the office of U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) on December 10, 2012 in Doral, Florida. The...
Virgilio Marquina and other protesters rally together outside the office of U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) on December 10, 2012 in Doral, Florida. The...
Joe Raedle/Getty Images

President Barack Obama’s upcoming budget plan will reportedly include cuts in Social Security benefits by lowering the cost of living adjustments known as “chained CPI.”

That would lower income for seniors, disabled veterans and reduce help to the poor. It would be bad for the American people, and liberals in this country should be outraged.

“In 2008, candidate Barack Obama told the American people that he would not cut Social Security,” said Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders on Thursday. “Having him go back on his word will only add to the rampant political cynicism that our country is experiencing today.”

The president claims these cuts are all in the name of reaching a deal with Republicans on deficit reduction. But unfortunately, these changes would reduce federal spending by only $130 billion over ten years. With our current national debt sitting at roughly $16 trillion, the ten-year estimate would reduce our current debt by about a whopping 1%.

Ten years from now, the number will be even lower, and as you can tell by that ratio, the big three are not the cause of our deficit.

We’ve shown you this chart more than once because it’s hugely important. Republicans are directly responsible for the main drivers of our deficit. The Bush tax cuts, along with the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan will account for nearly half our debt by 2019.

Social Security is completely solvent. It has not added one penny to the deficit, and it should be left alone.

Americans know this, and they don’t want their earned benefits cut. A recent survey shows eight in ten Americans would rather pay more taxes, than have Social Security cut.

Meanwhile, there are plenty of ways to cut the deficit without hurting the poorest among us. A new study reveals America’s largest corporations stash roughly $1.5 trillion in offshore tax havens each year by using these loopholes; they avoid paying about $150 billion in annual taxes. If just these loopholes were closed, it would cover the cost of living adjustments for Social Security and more.

President Obama needs to keep up the fight on this. He needs to put the same effort into protecting the big three as he is with gun control and immigration.

If he chooses to go forward with these cuts as expected on Wednesday, it will show a clear disconnect between the American people and the president they chose to protect their social safety net. He would be the first Democratic president in history to cave on the big three and chip away at Social Security.

Obama should not compromise on Social Security

Updated