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Social Security Guarantee Initiative

Rep. Paul D. Ryan

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Mr. Speaker, today I have introduced the Social Security Guarantee Initiative. This legislation would express Congress' commitment to protecting all Social Security benefits to current and soon-to-be retirees.

Last week, Congress received the President's budget request for next year. A major priority for this Congress and for this President is the need to save Social Security for present and future generations. Several proposals have been brought forward and will be debated extensively this session of Congress. The President has proposed investing some of the payroll tax revenues in the stock market. The problem is, the President wants a Washington-based government board to decide which stocks to buy and in which companies the government might take a share.

A better idea would be to allow individuals and families to make those decisions. A government board will inevitably be influenced by politics. Mixing politics with Americans' retirement could have disastrous consequences.

In all of this discussion, however, to reform Social Security, many seniors in Wisconsin and throughout the country have expressed their concerns that any reforms would ultimately end up costing them something. While we must improve the system for working Americans, the benefits today's senior have come to count on cannot and will not be changed in any way. As we move forward to reform Social Security, I believe we must send a bipartisan message to our nation's seniors that, while we must fix Social Security for future generations, current and imminent retirees will be held harmless.

The Social Security Guarantee Initiative would protect all guaranteed benefits for current retirees and those nearing retirement. We have a historic opportunity to preserve the nation's Social Security program. I look forward to working with the senior community in my District and my colleagues in Congress on this important issue.