Americans are increasingly worried they won’t be able to afford to stop working, and retirement ages are going up as a result. A growing number of seniors are forgoing necessary medical treatment or even splitting or skipping doses of their prescription medication to make it last longer.
Nevertheless, the Trump administration has repeatedly threatened to cut benefits to Social Security and other programs that help seniors retire with dignity. This administration treats Social Security like an ATM, stealing from older Americans as they please with no guarantee of paying them back.
I cannot and will not stand by while this administration attacks my friends and neighbors. Not only is the idea of cutting these benefits unacceptable to me, but I believe we must expand them. Social Security is one of the most successful programs in the history of this country, and it’s time to treat it as such:
No more uncertainty. Social Security will deplete its reserves by 2034, leading to cuts for over 20% of eligible seniors. We must introduce legislation to guarantee Social Security funding for the next 50 years. But we have to go further than that. We need common sense reforms, like linking Social Security benefits to inflation and smarter adjustments for rising cost of living. We have to raise the minimum benefit: Right now, an American retiring after 30 years of hard work is discovering their Social Security benefits put them below the poverty line. Therefore, I offer my full support to the Social Security 2100 Act that would enact many of these badly needed reforms, yet has yet to receive Republican support.
It breaks my heart when I hear older Americans tell me which pills they split and which they skip. Drug prices in American are the highest in the world because our government has lined its pockets with money from the pharmaceutical industry. We have to end this embarrassment. That’s why I am proud to endorse the Medicare Drug Price Negotiation Act, the Prescription Drug Price Relief Act, and the Affordable and Safe Prescription Drug Importation Act. These bills will allow the government to negotiate drug prices, lock them to the median of other comparable countries, and allow consumers to buy directly from other markets like Canada.
Pensions used to be Americans’ ironclad retirement fund, but Republicans are working tirelessly to undermine them, too. Under current law, 1.5 million working class Americans are at risk of having their pensions cut, and Congress is failing its duty to protect them. The Rehabilitation for Multiemployer Pensions Act was passed in the House with bipartisan support, yet continues to languish in the Senate. Americans cannot wait any longer. I will pressure the Senate to take up—and pass—this act and restore Americans’ confidence in their right to retire.
Seniors in America are facing a mounting crisis as this administration actively works to undermine their rights and put them into poverty. But they do not face it alone. I will fight every day alongside these proud Americans.