Ron Johnson suggests Medicare, Social Security be approved on annual basis | The Hill

  

Category:  News & Politics

Via:  jbb  •  2 weeks ago  •  49 comments

By:   Julia Mueller (The Hill)

Ron Johnson suggests Medicare, Social Security be approved on annual basis | The Hill
Sen. Ron Johnson (R-Wis.) said Wednesday that Social Security and Medicare should be up for congressional approval each year, instead of staying under their current status as federal entitlement programs. "Social Security and Medicare, if you qualify for the entitlement, you just get it no matter what the cost," Johnson said in an interview that…

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by Julia Mueller - 08/03/22 7:31 PM ET

Sen. Ron Johnson (R-Wis.) said Wednesday that Social Security and Medicare should be up for congressional approval each year, instead of staying under their current status as federal entitlement programs.

"Social Security and Medicare, if you qualify for the entitlement, you just get it no matter what the cost," Johnson said in an interview that aired Tuesday on "The Regular Joe Show" podcast.

The Wisconsin senator, who is up for reelection in a highly contested race this fall that will help determine which party holds the majority next year, argued that the mandatory spending status of funding for the federal programs should be switched to discretionary spending "so it's all evaluated."

"Our problem in this country is that more than 70 percent of our federal budget, of our federal spending, is all mandatory spending. It's on automatic pilot. It never — you just don't do proper oversight. You don't get in there and fix the programs going bankrupt. It's just on automatic pilot," Johnson said.

"As long as things are on automatic pilot, we just continue to pile up debt," he added.

He argued that funding for the programs should instead come before Congress for annual approval.

A spokesperson for Johnson's office told The Hill in a statement Wednesday that the senator "never suggested putting Medicare and Social Security on the chopping block."

"The Senator's point was that without fiscal discipline and oversight typically found with discretionary spending, Congress has allowed the guaranteed benefits for programs like Social Security and Medicare to be threatened. This must be addressed by Congress taking its responsibilities seriously to ensure that seniors don't need to question whether the programs they depend on remain solvent," the spokesperson said.

Social Security benefits are available to U.S. retirees, and Medicare health insurance is available to citizens who are over the age of 65 or disabled. American workers' taxes fund the programs, with workers paying into the federal programs. In the case of Social Security, benefits are linked in part to one's earnings, which help determine a monthly payment.

Democrats quickly pounced on Johnson's remarks, suggesting the majority party thinks they could hurt Johnson in his reelection bid.

Senate Majority Leader Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.) said that Johnson's comments showed that the programs could be cut by Republicans.

"They're saying the quiet part out loud. MAGA Republicans want to put Social Security and Medicare on the chopping block," Schumer wrote, referring to the Trump campaign slogan "Make America Great Again."

Johnson's spokesperson pushed back against the majority leader, saying in a statement that "Senator Schumer is lying about what Sen. Johnson said".


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JBB
Professor Principal
1  seeder  JBB    2 weeks ago

Worst Idea Ever! This is why the gop is "deplorable".

 
 
 
Tessylo
Professor Principal
1.1  Tessylo  replied to  JBB @1    2 weeks ago

Hey Dickhead Johnson!  How about we approve (or not) your salary and health care on a regular basis?

 
 
 
Vic Eldred
Professor Principal
2  Vic Eldred    2 weeks ago


"Social Security and Medicare, if you qualify for the entitlement, you just get it no matter what the cost," Johnson said in an interview that aired Tuesday on "The Regular Joe Show" podcast.

Notice what he is saying there?  One day maybe we'll decide to make those who became millionaires ineligible. Maybe....to save Social Security.

 
 
 
Dragon
Freshman Silent
2.1  Dragon  replied to  Vic Eldred @2    2 weeks ago

He is not saying make millionaires ineligible. If he wants to make millionaires ineligible, he needs to state that, not state need for annual reviews. If up for congressional review each year it will become a political football, based on whims of Congress. Look at how 1 or 2 in Congress can hold up things in Congress. 

 
 
 
Tessylo
Professor Principal
2.1.1  Tessylo  replied to  Dragon @2.1    2 weeks ago

Yeah, thanks for the clarification.  What Vic said  made no sense at all.

 
 
 
Vic Eldred
Professor Principal
2.1.2  Vic Eldred  replied to  Dragon @2.1    2 weeks ago
He is not saying make millionaires ineligible.

Not specifically, but making Social Security means tested would logically be part of an annual review.

 
 
 
Snuffy
Masters Guide
2.2  Snuffy  replied to  Vic Eldred @2    2 weeks ago

Ideas to help save or extend Social Security and Medicare :

  1. Perhaps it's time to again move the full retirement age for eligibility.  When SS was first created with a full retirement age of 65 the average life expectancy was 64.5.  With current life expectancy in the 70's perhaps it's time to revisit eligibility dates and move full retirement age up to 70.  And move the Medicare eligibility age to match the full retirement age.
  2. Remove the income cap for payments to increase the taxable maximum.
  3. Increase payroll taxes, while currently at 6.2% perhaps increase to 7%.
  4. Move politicians out of their special retirement programs and have them also participate in Social Security for their retirement.
 
 
 
Tessylo
Professor Principal
2.2.1  Tessylo  replied to  Snuffy @2.2    2 weeks ago

I bet you're already retired.  Don't go pushing my retirement age up to 70.  I want to retire at 65 or if possible 62.  

 
 
 
Drinker of the Wry
Freshman Principal
2.2.2  Drinker of the Wry  replied to  Tessylo @2.2.1    2 weeks ago
I want to retire at 65 or if possible 62.  

Exactly, if we are running out of money because retirees are living longer and we have a smaller number working, we just have to raise the SS tax on the remaining workers.

 
 
 
Snuffy
Masters Guide
2.2.3  Snuffy  replied to  Drinker of the Wry @2.2.2    2 weeks ago
I want to retire at 65 or if possible 62.  
Exactly, if we are running out of money because retirees are living longer and we have a smaller number working, we just have to raise the SS tax on the remaining workers.

When they raised the full retirement age from 65 to 67, they included a grandfather clause that kept people of a certain age to be eligible for full retirement at 65.  The remainder they created a step ladder approach based on the year you were born as to when you would reach the full retirement age with the payout rates reduced if below the full retirement age.  And they did not eliminate the early retirement age of 62.

But as the baby boomers are hitting the retirement age we have more people who are starting to draw on the SS system and you are correct they are living longer.  Current projections have Social Security remaining solvent until 2037, after which they will have to reduce the benefit amounts for payouts.  As retirees are living longer and we have a larger group of people coming into age for SS, we do need to make changes to the system on remaining workers in order to keep SS working.  Too many people rely on that system for their retirement for it to just end when it runs out of money.

 
 
 
Tessylo
Professor Principal
2.2.4  Tessylo  replied to  Snuffy @2.2.3    2 weeks ago

Not my problem.  They should have to work as hard as I did.  I'm going to enjoy the fruits of my retirement.

 
 
 
Snuffy
Masters Guide
2.2.5  Snuffy  replied to  Tessylo @2.2.4    2 weeks ago
Not my problem.  They should have to work as hard as I did.

You sound like a conservative here.  I hope you appreciate the irony of your position on this topic.

 
 
 
Tessylo
Professor Principal
2.2.6  Tessylo  replied to  Snuffy @2.2.5    2 weeks ago

That's the worst insult anyone could every hurl at me.  And nonsense.  

It's not irony.

FUCK OFF.

 
 
 
Drinker of the Wry
Freshman Principal
2.2.7  Drinker of the Wry  replied to  Snuffy @2.2.3    2 weeks ago

I'm 68, still productive and working and paying SS and Medicare taxes.

 
 
 
Snuffy
Masters Guide
2.2.9  Snuffy  replied to  Tessylo @2.2.6    2 weeks ago

Yeah,  I really didn't think  you could see the irony there.  

 
 
 
Snuffy
Masters Guide
2.2.10  Snuffy  replied to  Drinker of the Wry @2.2.7    2 weeks ago

Good for  you.  I'm only 64 but retired myself.  I volunteer my time as I've had a good life and set myself up for a comfortable retirement and it's only fair that I give back to the community.  But you keep on working and paying into SS and Medicare to fund me.  All I can say is 'Thanks'.  

 
 
 
Tessylo
Professor Principal
2.2.11  Tessylo  replied to  Snuffy @2.2.9    2 weeks ago

You really didn't think

You should have stopped right there.

See the last sentence of post 2.2.5

 
 
 
Snuffy
Masters Guide
2.2.12  Snuffy  replied to  Tessylo @2.2.11    2 weeks ago
You really didn't think

You should have stopped right there.

See the last sentence of post 2.2.5

I took you off ignore when you responded to me today as it seemed as if  you actually wanted to have a conversation on what I posted.  Unfortunately your response continues to show that all you have is snark.  Have a nice fucking day.

 
 
 
Drinker of the Wry
Freshman Principal
2.2.13  Drinker of the Wry  replied to  Snuffy @2.2.10    2 weeks ago

No problem.  I'm an Army civilian and surprisingly, enjoy my work at the Pentagon and the people that I work with.  It's as much a hobby as it's a job.

 
 
 
Tessylo
Professor Principal
2.2.14  Tessylo  replied to  Snuffy @2.2.12    2 weeks ago

You just have to have the last word.  It's tiresome.  

 
 
 
Drinker of the Wry
Freshman Principal
2.2.15  Drinker of the Wry  replied to  Tessylo @2.2.14    2 weeks ago

Is this your attempt to have the last word?

 
 
 
Vic Eldred
Professor Principal
2.2.16  Vic Eldred  replied to  Drinker of the Wry @2.2.15    2 weeks ago

It really is a childish thing.  

 
 
 
Tessylo
Professor Principal
2.2.17  Tessylo  replied to  Tessylo @2.2.14    2 weeks ago

I don't pretend to work at a high level position with probably top secret clearance and brag about it online and pretend that I'm a totally selfless person.  

 
 
 
Tessylo
Professor Principal
2.2.18  Tessylo  replied to  Vic Eldred @2.2.16    2 weeks ago

It really is.

 
 
 
Drinker of the Wry
Freshman Principal
2.2.19  Drinker of the Wry  replied to  Tessylo @2.2.17    2 weeks ago

Don't worry Tessylo, no one thinks that you pretend to be a selfless person.  

 
 
 
squiggy
Sophomore Quiet
2.2.20  squiggy  replied to  Drinker of the Wry @2.2.13    2 weeks ago

Don't rush out the door - 40% of your TSP has evaporated and it takes OPM 9mf months to finalize a claim, after ABC-C has scattered it.

 
 
 
squiggy
Sophomore Quiet
2.2.21  squiggy  replied to  squiggy @2.2.20    2 weeks ago

... whilst I'm still hot - FEHB can go pound sand, too. Medicare is a bargain compared to them.

 
 
 
Drinker of the Wry
Freshman Principal
2.2.22  Drinker of the Wry  replied to  squiggy @2.2.20    2 weeks ago

Thanks, 2 years ago I tried the L 2025 mix and it's down almost 6% for the year.

 
 
 
Mark in Wyoming
Professor Silent
2.3  Mark in Wyoming   replied to  Vic Eldred @2    2 weeks ago

only way that will work , what he proposes , is to bring SS back to what it was when it was first initiated , a completely volentary system of contribution . those that want to will , those that dont , wont .

 Asshats like him can kiss my royal irish ass , if they think i have contributed  my entire working life , only to be told at the end , i will be "means tested " and not get a dime in return  if i make too much or saved too much .

IF this is to be the case , i expect and demand every single penny paid in , to be returned with 3% interest compounded annually from the time i started paying in . That is what a simple savings account would have garnered if it were put away without being touched .

 
 
 
Greg Jones
Professor Guide
3  Greg Jones    2 weeks ago

Should rich people receive these benefits? Or should there be income, wealth, or net worth restrictions?

Should  the  programs be allowed to go bankrupt? Should non-citizens receive these benefits?

 
 
 
Vic Eldred
Professor Principal
3.1  Vic Eldred  replied to  Greg Jones @3    2 weeks ago
Should rich people receive these benefits?

I think that we should all pay into it, but once anyone makes over $250,000 per year should no longer receive benefits. 


Should  the  programs be allowed to go bankrupt? 

Social Security can't be allowed to go down. It needs fixing. Medicare needs a lot of fixing. 


Should non-citizens receive these benefits?

Absolutely not. They can be a plus. The penalty for being here illegally should be that they pay into the program but may not receive benefits. It may sound harsh, but that the price to be paid for violating the law.

 
 
 
Snuffy
Masters Guide
3.1.1  Snuffy  replied to  Vic Eldred @3.1    2 weeks ago
I think that we should all pay into it, but once anyone makes over $250,000 per year should no longer receive benefits. 

Could not agree more, too bad I can only give one vote up for this.  Yes, there should not be an income cap on taxable income and if retired and  your annual income exceeds a certain amount (and $250k annual income sure seems like a livable income) then you should not receive any social security payments.  Those who make this sort of income really don't need the additional SS money and this would really impact very few in the country so there's not a large voting base being impacted.  

 
 
 
Vic Eldred
Professor Principal
3.1.2  Vic Eldred  replied to  Snuffy @3.1.1    2 weeks ago

I doubt we'll here any argument against means testing.

 
 
 
Snuffy
Masters Guide
3.1.3  Snuffy  replied to  Vic Eldred @3.1.2    2 weeks ago

I hope not but never say never.  Look how many arguments where made to repeal the SALT tax cap.

 
 
 
Vic Eldred
Professor Principal
3.1.4  Vic Eldred  replied to  Snuffy @3.1.3    2 weeks ago

And how many decades have we been talking about having Medicare negotiate prescription drug prices with Big Pharma?

 
 
 
Nerm_L
PhD Principal
3.1.5  Nerm_L  replied to  Vic Eldred @3.1    2 weeks ago
I think that we should all pay into it, but once anyone makes over $250,000 per year should no longer receive benefits. 

If you want to tax income then tax income.  Stop trying to protect the rich at the expense of everyone else.  Stop selling out America to play political games.  We all know that means testing Social Security is a political ploy to avoid taxing income before eligibility.  It's just another gimmick to protect rich parasites on the economy.

Social Security can't be allowed to go down. It needs fixing. Medicare needs a lot of fixing. 

The problem of Social Security solvency only proves that there isn't enough income to live in the United States.  We're shipping our prosperity offshore.  We can't save anything for the future any longer.  The entire country is living paycheck to paycheck.  

Judas sold out Jesus for 30 pieces of silver.  And Judas died anyway.  So, what was the real value of that money?

 
 
 
Vic Eldred
Professor Principal
3.1.6  Vic Eldred  replied to  Nerm_L @3.1.5    2 weeks ago
  We all know that means testing Social Security is a political ploy to avoid taxing income before eligibility. 

No, Nerm. I still want them to pay into SS.

 
 
 
Nerm_L
PhD Principal
3.1.7  Nerm_L  replied to  Vic Eldred @3.1.6    2 weeks ago
No, Nerm. I still want them to pay into SS.

Yeah, you only want to deny SS benefit so they don't have to pay income taxes.  We get it.  FICA taxes on that first $100k is such a burden.  The top 20 percent is still crying about that hardship.

If you want to tax income then tax income.  Your argument is as 'woke' as any other liberal argument.

People seem completely unware that the financial sector is planning a tectonic shift in global economics.  These Mitt Romney arguments are going to become obsolete in the not-too-distant future.  The coinbase is coming.   

 
 
 
Nerm_L
PhD Principal
3.2  Nerm_L  replied to  Greg Jones @3    2 weeks ago
Should rich people receive these benefits?

YES.  They've paid into the program so they are entitled to the benefit.  That's the way it works in America.

Should  the  programs be allowed to go bankrupt? Should non-citizens receive these benefits?

Drive the money lenders out of the temple.  

 
 
 
evilgenius
PhD Guide
4  evilgenius    2 weeks ago

This was one of the seats Democrats think they already had a shot at. This could be the one thing that takes it over the top. 

 
 
 
Greg Jones
Professor Guide
4.1  Greg Jones  replied to  evilgenius @4    2 weeks ago

So you don't believe in common sense adjustments? That's what Johnson is suggesting.

 
 
 
Snuffy
Masters Guide
4.1.1  Snuffy  replied to  Greg Jones @4.1    2 weeks ago

The problem IMO with changing from an entitlement program to an annually approved program is that  you rely on Congress to approve funding for it each year.  If they don't pass a budget or a continuing resolution then checks don't get sent out and there are millions of retirees in the country that only have that SS check to live on.  They have nothing to fall back on and cannot wait a month or so before Congress gets it's ass in gear to pass a budget or CR so that the money can again roll out.  And what about those seniors on Medicare who are in the middle of critical health procedures such as cancer treatment that get paused when the money halts.  

No, this is not a program that should be changed to annual approval for funding.  I do agree that it's time to reset the rules on SS and Medicare but not this.  

 
 
 
Thrawn 31
Professor Guide
4.1.2  Thrawn 31  replied to  Greg Jones @4.1    2 weeks ago

They are not common sense adjustments, they are retarded suggestions that would immediately become a complete fucking shit show and hurt a lot of people (including a significant number of republicans) for no reason other than people like Johnson are fuckin assholes. 

I wonder what his thoughts would be if his salary and benefits were put up for an annual vote by the American people? Why do I feel like he thinks he deserves to ride the biggest gravy train in the country without the worry that it could be cut off on an given year?

Seriously, what other job do you get paid 6 figures, have the best benefits and retirement package imaginable, and you don’t have to actually do ANYTHING? 

 
 
 
Thrawn 31
Professor Guide
5  Thrawn 31    2 weeks ago

Yet another “idea” from the GOP that is complete shit and whose sole purpose is to inflict harm just for the hell of it.

 
 
 
charger 383
Professor Quiet
6  charger 383    2 weeks ago

I had to pay SS taxes starting on a summer job at 15, so now they owe me. I did not get a choice on paying in and government is now obligated to pay out to me. 

 
 
 
Gazoo
Sophomore Silent
8  Gazoo    2 weeks ago

Sure thing, ron,,,as long as your pay and benefits are voter approved every year.

 
 
 
freepress
Freshman Silent
9  freepress    2 weeks ago

Why do Republicans hate seniors? Most of them in office have been seniors for quite awhile. Their attitudes about seniors during Covid should have told people everything. They only want forced birth, indoctrinated evangelicals, right wing nuts and a base voter who never questions authority.

 
 
 
Nerm_L
PhD Principal
10  Nerm_L    2 weeks ago

Republicans just can't help themselves, bless their hearts.  MAGA needs bigger nukes to burn this deadwood out of the party.  And the Democrats' Congressional Campaign Committee supports MAGA.

These DINO RINO dinosaurs don't have a future.  

 
 
 
squiggy
Sophomore Quiet
11  squiggy    2 weeks ago

Politicians benefit immensely from defining/creating groups that need to lobby politicians for favor. Johnson wants to be greased annually for me to have a chance at recovering my money.

 
 

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