2005 Regular Session
By: Representative Evans, Robinson (63rd), Banks, Brown, Buck, Calhoun, Coleman (65th), Dedeaux, Fleming, Franks, Fredericks, Green, Harrison, Huddleston, Mayo, Middleton, Moak, Peranich, Straughter, Sullivan, Whittington
A RESOLUTION CALLING ON THE UNITED STATES CONGRESS TO REJECT PLANS TO PRIVATIZE SOCIAL SECURITY BY CUTTING SOCIAL SECURITY’S GUARANTEED BENEFITS AND DIVERTING MONIES OUT OF SOCIAL SECURITY INTO PRIVATE INVESTMENT ACCOUNTS, AND FURTHER CALLING ON CONGRESS TO COMMIT TO REPAYING TO THE SOCIAL SECURITY TRUST FUND All THE MONIES IT HAS TAKEN AND SPENT FOR OTHER PURPOSES.
WHEREAS, Social Security’s income protections, guaranteed lifelong benefits, cost-of-living adjustments to guard against inflation, increased benefits for families, greater income replacement for low-income workers, and disability and survivor benefit, are the backbone of retirement security and family protection in the United States; and
WHEREAS, Social Security provides crucial, often indispensable income protection for the 47 million individuals, one of every six Americans, receiving benefits; and
WHEREAS, Social Security is the nation’s most successful and most important family income protection program, but it has long-term funding needs we should address; and
WHEREAS, some policymakers propose to address these needs by cutting guaranteed benefits and privatizing Social Security, that is, diverting a third or more of workers’ payroll tax contributions out of the Social Security Trust Fund and into private investment accounts; and
WHEREAS, privatization will worsen Social Security’s funding needs by draining resources from the Trust Fund into private accounts, increasing the federal deficit by $2 trillion over the first decade alone and more in the future and putting us deeper in debt to foreign creditors; and
WHEREAS, some officials and members of Congress have suggested the federal government will not pay back the monies it has taken from the Social Security Trust Fund over the past 20 years and used for other things, thereby denying working families the monies they paid into Social Security and leading to further benefit cuts; and
WHEREAS, privatizing Social Security will cut guaranteed benefits by 30 percent for young workers, even for those who do not participate in private accounts, costing them $152,000 over their retirements, denying them benefits they have earned and imperiling their economic security; and
WHEREAS, cutting guaranteed benefits will hurt the elderly because Social Security is the only secure source of retirement income for most Americans, providing at least half the income of nearly two-thirds of older American households and lifting more than 11 million seniors out of poverty; and
WHEREAS, diverting resources from Social Security to fund private accounts will threaten guaranteed survivor and disability benefits, thus harming working families, as roughly one in five workers dies before retiring and nearly three in ten become too disabled to work before reaching retirement age; and
WHEREAS, privatizing Social Security will burden state and local governments, as cuts in guaranteed benefits will increase demands for public assistance at the very moment growth in the federal deficit due to privatization induces the federal government to shift greater responsibilities onto states and localities; and
WHEREAS, Congress should not rush through drastic and damaging changes in Social Security that undermine its family income protections, but instead should take the time needed to develop careful and thoughtful reforms that address Social Security’s funding needs without cutting benefits or exploding the deficit:
NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED BY THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES OF THE STATE OF MISSISSIPPI, That we do hereby urge Congress to:
(1) First commit to paying back the Social Security Trust Fund all of the monies it has borrowed and spent on other things; and
(2) Carefully study a variety of potential changes that will address Social Security’s problems while ensuring the program will continue to meet its purpose of providing income protection and economic security for America’s families; and
(3) Adopt changes to strengthen the Social Security family income protections without cutting guaranteed benefits or exploding the deficit; and
(4) Reject any proposals to divert monies out of Social Security to fund private accounts.
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, That copies of this resolution be furnished to members of the Mississippi Congressional Delegation, the President of the United States Senate, the Speaker of the House of the United States House of Representatives and to the members of the Capitol Press Corps.