Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Obama's heartbreaking Social Security cuts

Heartbreaking news: To appease Republicans, President Obama has offered to slash Social Security benefits by $112 billion over the coming decade.

If this goes through, Barack Obama will be the first Democratic president in history to cut Social Security benefits.

Should MoveOn make a big final push against any cuts to Social Security? Click a link below to vote:

Dear MoveOn member,

Standing up to a President we fought so hard to elect, right after an election, isn't easy.

Which is why we urgently need your advice.

As part of the ongoing fiscal negotiations in Washington, President Obama has offered a massive concession to Republicans: A deal that would slash Social Security benefits by $112 billion over the next decade. And we have to make a decision right now about what to do.

According to the AARP, "A typical 80-year-old woman will lose the equivalent of 3 months worth of food annually" under this plan.1 

This is a bad deal for current retirees. And it'll hit future retirees even harder, because the proposal cuts Social Security more and more with each passing year. After 10 years, benefits would be cut by about $500 a year for the average retiree. After 20 years, benefits would be cut by about $1,000 a year. And beyond that, it just gets worse.2

But here's the good news: There's still time to block this deal. The U.S. Senate is full of Social Security champions.3 And Social Security is central to the Democratic Party's legacy. 

Still, just like standing up to the President isn't easy for MoveOn members, it isn't easy for Democratic senators. But if Social Security champions who are rejecting this plan in the Senate know we've got their backs, we have a chance to push President Obama to do the right thing.

So we have a decision to make right now: Should MoveOn keep standing with champions of Social Security and make a big final push to oppose any cuts?

"Yes. Let's make a big final push to stop the proposed cuts to Social Security."

"No. I don't think we should do that." (And tell us why.)

If we do this, here's what we have in mind:

  • We have a powerful TV ad that we can run in the states of vulnerable Senators who are up for re-election.
  • We'll make sure that champions of Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid know we have their backs, by publicly thanking them and running ads in support of their leadership.
  • We'll continue to remind Democrats that MoveOn-backed primary challenges for those who vote to slash our social safety net are a real possibility.
  • We'll organize on-the-ground events at district offices, while Senators are home this week. 
  • And we'll continue jamming phone lines in Congress and the White House, flooding offices with petitions, and doing whatever else we can to show significant opposition to any deal that cuts Social Security, Medicare, or Medicaid.

Click to vote on our plan:

"Yes. Let's make a big final push to stop the proposed cuts to Social Security."

"No. I don't think we should do that." (And tell us why.)

Last time there was talk of a "grand bargain," progressives united behind a simple message: No cuts to Social Security, Medicare, or Medicaid. And, after a long fight, we won.

This is not necessarily an easy choice, though. If there's agreement on a "grand bargain," President Obama will use the power of his office to try and sell it to the American people. Going up against that is hard. It will require significant resources. And of course, we just got done making a major financial investment to win his election.

So it's up to you. Thanks so much for your input.

–Justin, Vicki, Garlin, Ilya, and the rest of the team


1. "AARP to Congress and the President: Don't Cut Social Security," AARP, December 18, 2012

2. "Social Security COLA Cut," Strengthen Social Security, December 18, 2012

3. "Harry Reid: 'We Are Not Going To Mess With Social Security'," Huffington Post, November 8, 2012

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PAID FOR BY MOVEON.ORG POLITICAL ACTION, Not authorized by any candidate or candidate's committee. This email was sent to eddie alfaro on December 19, 2012. To change your email address or update your contact info, click here. To remove yourself from this list, click here.

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