Ted Stevens on Social Security
Republican Sr Senator (AK)
A: I am a “Notch Baby” myself, so I am aware of the Social Security payment disparity. The “Notch” formula, adopted in 1977 as part of a broader Social Security reform package, was one of several provisions added to Social Security to shore up the financial stability of the system for the future. Once again, the Social Security system is looking at a looming instability crisis as the Baby Boom generation begins to retire and fewer workers are available to pay benefits for today’s retirees. The next Administration will need to lead a bipartisan effort to stabiliz this program so that it remains available for future generations. I would try to solve the “Notch” issue as part of broader reform of the Social Security system. This issue cannot be addressed as a single issue.
A: I support a fairer method of calculating the COLA for Social Security within the context of overall reform of the Social Security system. Social Security is not a complete retirement package. It was conceived as a safety net for Americans with no other means of supporting themselves during retirement. In the 1930’s when Social Security began, eligibility for benefits began at age 65, but the average life expectancy for Americans then was only 64. Entitlement spending, mainly Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid, accounts for ever increasing federal government spending. If this continues, taxes will have to be raised substantially or cuts in benefits will be necessary,
A: I believe an overall reform of the Social Security system to ensure its long-term solvency should be a priority. Such reform should also include incentives for individuals to save for their own retirements, beginning early in their careers, and should include incentives for employers to provide well-funded retirement benefits. Such retirement packages should be portable, since many workers now change jobs frequently during their careers.
Proponents recommend voting YES because:
Perhaps the worst example of wasteful spending is when we take the taxes people pay for Social Security and, instead of saving them, we spend them on other things. Even worse than spending Social Security on other things is we do not count it as debt when we talk about the deficit every year. So using the Social Security money is actually a way to hide even more wasteful spending without counting it as debt. This Amendment would change that.
Opponents recommend voting NO because:
This amendment has a fatal flaw. It leaves the door open for private Social Security accounts by providing participants with the option of "pre-funding of at least some portion of future benefits."
The mission of the Alliance for Retired Americans is to ensure social and economic justice and full civil rights for all citizens so that they may enjoy lives of dignity, personal and family fulfillment and security. The Alliance believes that all older and retired persons have a responsibility to strive to create a society that incorporates these goals and rights and that retirement provides them with opportunities to pursue new and expanded activities with their unions, civic organizations and their communities.
The following ratings are based on the votes the organization considered most important; the numbers reflect the percentage of time the representative voted the organization's preferred position.
Congress must address the rapidly approaching disaster of a depleted Social Security system. Within the next ten years "baby boomers" will start retiring. It is estimated that, as a result of this, by 2013 Social Security will be making greater payments to retirees than it will take in from the workforce. By 2032 the Social Security Trust Fund will be completely exhausted. Congress could rewrite this forecast by establishing individual savings accounts, restoring Social Security to permanent actuarial solvency, improving work incentives and/or resolving internal administrative problems.
|Other candidates on Social Security:||Ted Stevens on other issues:|
Newly elected in 2008 & seated in 2009:
Newly appointed in 2009;
special election in 2010:
Announced retirement as of 2010:
Up for 6-year term in 2010:
(13 Democrats; 15 Republicans)
Senate Votes (analysis)