New GOP Plan Would Save Military From Sequestration by Cutting Social Security
WASHINGTON — A pair of House Republicans have a new bill that would spare the military from sequestration by cutting the Social Security benefits of many Americans who already experience painful federal budget cuts.
Reps. Jim Bridenstine (R-Okla.) and Doug Lamborn (R-Colo.) are introducing the Provide for the Common Defense Act on Tuesday. The legislation would cancel out the next two years of sequestration cuts for the Pentagon by putting a heavier burden on senior citizens and federal workers.
Specifically, the plan would change the way cost-of-living adjustments are calculated for Social Security, using a measurement called “chained CPI.” The result would be less money in the pockets of beneficiaries. It would also increase federal employee retirement contributions and means-test Medicare premiums. Critics of means-testing argue that such a change would undermine the popularity of the program, turning it into welfare for lower-income Americans.
“Washington has a spending problem, but incessantly and mindlessly cutting national security will not get us out of our fiscal mess,” said Lamborn in a statement. “President Obama must realize that out-of-control entitlement spending is drowning our country in debt. Our bill cancels national security sequestration for two years by enacting a few Obama-endorsed reforms that will actually produce over $300 billion in savings over ten years. Two-thirds of the savings will go toward debt reduction.”