Candidate Positions on Social Security

In the primary phase of the 2016 elections the subject of the Social Security Retirement program (OASI) has not been much debated. As indicated on my blog page on the subject  https://eswonk.wordpress.com/social-security-retirement-fund-oasi/, the OASI fund will pay full benefits until 2035 and if something isn’t done to shore up the funds, benefits will drop by about 25% at that point. I’ll be gone by then but I do believe that now is the time to make the necessary changes so that either the program can be fully financed for another 50 years or the current working public can adjust their retirement plans accordingly.

I have checked the website of the three presumed presidential candidates to determine their positons on this issue.

Hillary Clinton’s website at  https://www.hillaryclinton.com/issues/ addresses this issue under the heading of “Social Security and Medicare”. – Her position addresses retirement, disability and Medicare. She is definitely opposed to any plan to privatize any of the programs and favors expanding benefits rather than cutting them back. She favors raising taxes to pay for it all.

In the July -August issue of the AARP Bulletin pg. 10, Secretary Clinton clearly reiterates these positions.

I agree whole heartedly with her position which rejects privatization. I agree with her position on increasing revenue by taxing earned incomes above the current cap. However, I have reservations when she mentions the possibility of also taxing unearned income. That might bring about unintended counter-productive consequences. For instance, those retirees who have been frugal all their lives and invested their savings will find their income reduced.

Donald Trump’s website at https://www.donaldjtrump.com/positions does not directly address the Social Security Issue. – However, in the above mentioned issue of the AARP Bulletin, Donald Trump  responds to AARP’s specific questions on this issue with the following set of general conservative strategies:

Stimulate the Economy,  Cut taxes, Renegotiate trade deals, Repeal Dodd-Frank and the Affordable Care Act, and Immigration Reform.

Although some of these strategies have a gut level appeal to my fiscally conservative nature, I honestly do not think any of them will in any way have a positive effect on Social Security finances.

The Johnson/Weld (Libertarian candidates) website at https://johnsonweld.com/issues/ does not seem to address the Social Security Issue. – Based upon their strong “Minimum Government” basic philosophy, I would be surprised if they offer anything but privatization as the solution to Social Security issues whether in regard to retirement, disability, or Medicare.

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