Just last week this blog discussed how some politicians may want to gut Social Security retirement and disability benefits for Oregonians who need those benefits the most. Thankfully, a U.S. senator and U.S. representative have introduced legislation to try and protect those people from having their benefits cuts.
The identical bills, introduced by Sen. Mark Begich and Rep. Ted Deutch, both Democrats, are said to keep Social Security solvent for the next 75 years by asking those who can afford to pay more to do just that. This bill would definitely help those receiving Social Security disability benefits, because the trust fund that benefits are paid from could run out in the next few years.
One of the main problems for funding Social Security benefits is that payroll taxes are capped at $113,700. This means that people who make millions in a year stop paying into the program very early in the year. The bills would remove the cap, which would give a much needed influx of revenue for Social Security disability benefits.
Advocates for Social Security praised the legislation, saying that removing the payroll tax cap simply means wealthier individuals will pay at the same rate that middle class workers do. Imagine making $50,000 or less a year and paying payroll taxes all year, while someone who makes more than $1 million a year only pays payroll taxes for a month or so. The legislation could be one step to make Social Security healthier for the people who need it most. By asking some to pay a little more, those who are disabled and need the benefits to get by don’t have to worry about having their benefits cut or eliminated entirely.
Source: Office of U.S. Sen. Mark Begich, “Begich Reintroduces Social Security Bill, Pleased Companion Bill Dropped In House,” Devon Kearns, Feb. 14, 2013