For generations, our nation has lived by a simple promise: Americans who have worked hard their entire lives have the right to retire with dignity and security. Seniors’ golden years should be “golden”—living in good health, without financial insecurity. Our seniors have worked hard and kept their end of the deal. I will always fight to ensure our government keeps its end of the deal and protects senior citizens.
I will fight against efforts to privatize Social Security and proposals to turn Medicare and Medicaid into block grant programs. These programs have made an immeasurable difference in our daily lives and I assure you that I will do everything I can to strengthen, protect, and improve these essential programs.
Dismantling the promise of Social Security would take away guaranteed, inflation proof benefits for today’s children and young adults. No one wants to return to the tragic days before Social Security, when seniors would work until the day they died because they could not afford to retire. To honor a lifetime of work and service, I will continue working with my colleagues to protect, strengthen, and expand Social Security.
I am proud to have helped pass the Affordable Care Act and the improvements it made to Medicare. The ACA makes Medicare stronger by adding new benefits, fighting fraud, and improving care for patients. And we’re already seeing results: So far, 8.2 million seniors have saved more than $11.5 billion on their prescription drugs since 2010, an average of $1,407 per senior. And over the next ten years, the law will save the average person in Medicare $4,200.
Today, more than 37 million seniors in Medicare have also received free preventive services with no co-pay under the Affordable Care Act, and Medicare Part B premiums have held steady for the last three years. The ACA also managed to control medical costs and extend the Medicare Hospital Insurance Trust Fund until at least 2030. These are remarkable accomplishments and I’m proud to support healthcare reform that provides better care and better results for our seniors.
The dream of retirement security is getting harder to achieve, with only 22% of Americans feeling “very confident” about their retirement, according to the Employee Benefit Research Institute’s 2016 Retirement Confidence Survey. I am working hard to address the retirement crisis and ensure that, after a lifetime of hard work, people are able to retire with dignity and financial independence. That is why I am the cosponsor of the Social Security 2100 Act, a bill that would increase benefits for all hard-working Americans.
Repeal the WEP/GPO
More than one million teachers, fire fighters, and police officers have their Social Security checks unfairly reduced each month because at some point in their career they worked in jobs where they weren’t allowed to pay into Social Security. While the Windfall Elimination Provision and the Government Pension Offset were intended to make the system fairer, the formula has resulted in millions of public servants being penalized by having their Social Security benefits drastically cut. That is why I am a co-sponsor of the Social Security Fairness Act. This bill would repeal the Windfall Elimination Provision and the Government Pension Offset in their entirety, so the 220,000 public servants in California can get the full Social Security benefits they have earned.