A bipartisan group of senators is reportedly considering raising the age of retirement to get Social Security benefits as part of broader efforts to overhaul the program.
Sens. Angus King, I-Maine, and Bill Cassidy, R-La., are considering gradually raising the retirement age to about 70 as part of their Social Security legislation overhaul, Semafor reported Tuesday.
“This is an example of two leaders trying to find a solution to a clear and foreseeable danger,” Cassidy and King reps told Semafor in a statement. “Although the final framework is still taking shape, there are no cuts for Americans currently receiving Social Security benefits in our plan. Indeed, many will receive additional benefits.”
Sen. Mike Rounds, R-S.D., previously told the news outlet that raising the payroll tax cap was under discussion.
Only the first $160,000 of employees’ earnings are currently subject to payroll taxes, which help fund Social Security. But according to the Congressional Budget office, if Congress doesn’t step in, retirement benefits will be cut roughly 20% for seniors starting in 2032, Semafor reported.
According to the Washington Examiner, the senators are looking at a change to the program’s formula that calculates monthly benefits, transforming it from a system that disburses funds based on one’s average earnings to base rewards on how many years the applicant made Social Security payments throughout their career.
The proposals come amid a warning from the Social Security Administration that its trust fund reserves could exhaust its resources if Congress doesn’t make changes. One projection by the Congressional Research Service predicts the program will reach insolvency by 2035.
Republicans have pushed back at charges they’d cut Medicare and Social Security benefits, saying any plans to do so are “off the table,” the Washington Examiner reported.
“I want to find a reasonable and a responsible way that we can lift the debt ceiling but take control of this runaway spending,” House Speaker Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., told CBS on Jan. 29.
“If you look at the last four years, the Democrats have increased spending by 30%, $400 billion. We’re at 120% of GDP. We haven’t been in this place to debt since World War II, so we can’t continue down this path.”
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