New GOP Congress Fires Shot At Social Security On Day One

Talking Points Memo has the article New GOP Congress Fires Shot At Social Security On Day One.

With a little-noticed proposal, Republicans took aim at Social Security on the very first day of the 114th Congress.

The incoming GOP majority approved late Tuesday a new rule that experts say could provoke an unprecedented crisis that conservatives could use as leverage in upcoming debates over entitlement reform.

The largely overlooked change puts a new restriction on the routine transfer of tax revenues between the traditional Social Security retirement trust fund and the Social Security disability program. The transfers, known as reallocation, had historically been routine; the liberal Center for Budget and Policy Priorities said Tuesday that they had been made 11 times. The CBPP added that the disability insurance program “isn’t broken,” but the program has been strained by demographic trends that the reallocations are intended to address.

The House GOP’s rule change would still allow for a reallocation from the retirement fund to shore up the disability fund — but only if an accompanying proposal “improves the overall financial health of the combined Social Security Trust Funds,” per the rule, expected to be passed on Tuesday. While that language is vague, experts say it would likely mean any reallocation would have to be balanced by new revenues or benefit cuts.

I don’t know why anybody is surprised that the House GOP would waste even a  single day before attacking one of their favorite targets.  It is funny how Democratic run houses of Congress cannot find ways to get anything past the minority opposition, but Republican led houses seem to figure out sneaky ways to bend the rules that will force the minority to swallow whatever the majority wants.

Elizabeth Warren has posted her comments about this on her Facebook pages.

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