Senator Dan Coats (R-Ind.), senior Senate Republican on the Joint Economic Committee, today said that the latest Social Security and Medicare Trustees report shows that Washington continues to ignore our nation’s long-term fiscal challenges.
“Sooner or later, all Americans will feel the impact of our country’s financial reality, and they will hold their elected officials accountable,” said Coats. “This report shows why Congress should not wait for this preventable fiscal crisis to hit. We should address this situation now so we are not forced to make more drastic and painful changes later.”
According to the report, “Neither Medicare nor Social Security can sustain projected long-run program costs in full under currently scheduled financing, and legislative changes are necessary to avoid disruptive consequences for beneficiaries and taxpayers. If lawmakers take action sooner rather than later, more options and more time will be available to phase in changes so that the public has adequate time to prepare. Earlier action will also help elected officials minimize adverse impacts on vulnerable populations, including lower-income workers and people already dependent on program benefits.”
In their report, the trustees estimate that Social Security’s disability trust fund will become insolvent in 2016. Both portions of the Social Security program – disability and old age and survivors benefits – are estimated to become insolvent in 2033, with the Medicare trust fund for hospital coverage projected to be insolvent by 2030.
“The current rate of mandatory spending is unsustainable,” added Coats. “Unless Congress and the White House summon the political will to make structural changes to Social Security and Medicare, these programs may not be available for future generations.”
Click here for a copy of the report.