Republicans have stated time and time again that they have no plans to slash Social Security or Medicare. Heck, Joe Biden employed an impressive linguistic gimmick during his State of the Union speech earlier this year to persuade Americans they wouldn’t cut the programs.
RSC Proposes To Cut Social Security And Medicare Due To Raised Retirement Age
In contrast, the Republican Study Committee, which comprises around 75% of House Republicans, recently published its preferred 2024 budget, in which the party proposes to — you guessed it — cut Social Security and Medicare.
Keep an eye on how serious they are. The RSC claims that the paper, which was made available to the public on Wednesday, is more than just a financial report.
The proposed budget would effectively lower Social Security payouts due to the raised retirement age for prospective retirees. Despite the fact that the leaflet makes an effort to reassure readers that there will only be “modest adjustments,” it omits Republican suggestions for the new retirement age.
Republicans want to convert Medicare into a “premium support” system, thereby turning it into a voucher system and requiring Americans with disabilities to wait longer to obtain benefits. Under such a scheme, the guarantee that seniors will have affordable access to Medicare would be taken away.
Republicans Want To Put Trump’s Tax Cut Into Effect
Republicans also support “regulatory reforms that increase economic growth” (encouraging the kind of deregulation that welcomes collapsing financial institutions, corporate-polluted rivers, and more than 1,000 train derailments annually), “work requirements” (putting more restrictions on those who cannot pay for social services), and “pro-growth tax reform” (i.e., lowering taxes for the wealthy and corporations).
The party seeks to implement particular aspects of Trump’s tax cut plan, which gave the wealthiest 1% a nearly $49,000 annual tax break while providing the lowest 60% only a $500 reduction. The Congressional Budget Office estimates that doing this will add roughly $2.5 trillion to the deficit over ten years. Additionally, the party is in support of abolishing the inheritance tax, which only affects heirs who own property worth at least $13 million.
The budget requests for the “reform of all federal benefit programs to include work promotion requirements,” which suggests that they intend to impose work requirements on everything from food stamps to Medicare. I’m sorry, Andrew Yang, but the budget makes it clear that the government opposes any efforts to put ideas like universal basic income into effect.
The budget also calls for raising the legal age of majority, criticizing the “significantly lower labor force participation rate of 64.6% for those aged 55 to 64,” and arguing that this rate should be raised. Fewer people in this age group may be employed for a variety of reasons, such as issues with their physical or mental health, the need to care for their children or grandchildren, or a simple lack of interest in working for the remainder of their lives. Republicans’ stated solution is for people to work more hours rather than coming up with a solution to any of those problems.
Speaking of families, the budget proposes to replace a clause permitting schools to offer free lunches to every student with a means test that will identify which kids are eligible and which ones are not.
The budget lists numerous tactics it intends to employ to evade regulation. One of the many requirements in the measure is the reinstatement of Trump’s executive actions that have reduced regulations, including several ones dealing with environmental protection. Due to one-third of the country being covered in smog, the hundreds of dead fish that wash up on Texas’ shore, and the contaminated streams in East Palestine, Republicans are calling for less environmental regulation.
All of this is only an example of what the Republican party has listed as their “priorities” for 2024.