In a news release from the office of Bernie Sanders, the Vermont senator criticizes suggestions made by officials that Social Security is eligible for the cutting block in deficit negotiations between President Obama and congressional Republicans. “Social Security has not contributed one nickel to our deficit or our national debt,” Sanders says, as the program is funded by the payroll tax, not the federal Treasury.

The release cites figures produced by Social Security Works, a coalition of seniors groups, showing that one proposal — known as the “Chained-CPI” — would shrink funds by $112 billion over the course of a decade. Those cuts would reduce yearly benefits to seniors age 75 and over by hundreds of dollars and $1,000 by the time they reach 85. –ARK


Let us be clear,” Sanders said. “Social Security has not contributed one nickel to our deficit or our national debt. Social Security is funded by the payroll tax, not the U.S. Treasury.” The program that benefits more than 50 million seniors and disabled has a $2.6 trillion surplus, he stressed, and will be able to provide full benefits for every eligible American for the next 25 years.

“I am especially disturbed that the president is considering cuts in Social Security after he campaigned against cuts in 2008,” Sanders added. Obama made his position clear on Sept. 6, 2008, when he said: “John McCain’s campaign has suggested that the best answer for the growing pressures on Social Security might be to cut cost of living adjustments or raise the retirement age. Let me be clear: I will not do either,” Obama said. “The American people expect the president to keep his word,” Sanders said.

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