Bipartisan Deficit Committee Proposes Retirement Age Increase

By: KKTV/Associated Press
By: KKTV/Associated Press
Leaders of President Obama

President Obama standing with National Commission on Fiscal Responsibility and Reform Co-Chairmen, former White House Chief of Staff Erskine Bowles, left, and former Wyoming Sen. Alan Simpson.

Leaders of President Obama's bipartisan deficit commission are proposing a new deficit cutting plan that they admit will be unpopular.

The commission has proposed reducing annual cost-of-living increases for Social Security, gradually raising the retirement age from 67 to 69 and taking aim at popular tax breaks such as the mortgage interest deduction. The plan would also curb the growth of Medicare.

The proposal would need support from 14 of the commission's 18 members to force a debate in Congress. CBS News reports that the plan does not look like it will win enough support within the commission. Democrats on the committee are balking at the idea of making cuts to Social Security and Medicare, while Republicans are recoiling at the parts of the proposal that would see taxes raised. The authors of the proposal, Democrat Erskine Bowles and Republican Alan Simpson, both acknowledged that they view the plan as a starting point versus a definitive solution.

The deficit-cutting plan comes at a time when the Treasury Department has announced expectations of a third straight year of $1 trillion-plus deficits.

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  • by Dave W. Location: Md on Nov 13, 2010 at 06:43 AM
    The raising of the retirement age and lowering of the benefits, I have no problem with as I am not planning on it even being there in 20 yrs at my 67th birthday. What does strike concern is the removal mortgage interest deduction. The unintended consequences of this need to be looked at very closely. I personally would have to file for bankruptcy as tax on income of rental properties would not be able to be offset by mortgage interest deduction. Single property owners could be put into a bind as well as now everyone's tax burden would go up significantly!!!
  • by Bonnie Location: Minnesota on Nov 11, 2010 at 11:16 AM
    I am of the age to begin to draw social security now. But my concern is for my children and grandchildren. Gen X, Y and Z'ers need to understand how SS benefits are structured. The current system allows spounses that may have never contributed to the system to draw half of the amount the working spouse is entitled to if that results in a more attractive benefit for the non-working/contributing spouse. How could anyone expect a system like this to sustain itself? The proposed reform is just a repeat of what has been suggested in the past; jeopardize the younger workers by forcing them to put off retirement or paying higher taxes. It is time that someone takes a look at the structure and may I dare suggest phasing in a policy of only allowing retirees to draw benefits based upon their own individual contirbutions during their working years. The current sytem may have been fine while my grandmother stayed hone to raise her family, but who has the luxury of that today?
  • by Paty Location: Charlotte, NC on Nov 11, 2010 at 10:47 AM
    I'm not surprised at these outrageous recommendations by our all knowing millionaire politicians! Listen Washington what do you not understand. You need to cut spending in your own house first! This is what the citizens of this country not only want but expect!
  • by Richard Location: Colorado Springs on Nov 11, 2010 at 10:40 AM
    Social Security was designed to supplement a persons' retirement to prevent what happened during the great depression in the 1930's, not to provide 100% funding. If cuts need to be made it needs to be the money paid to children and others collecting Social Security benifits other than for retirement. Also we need to stop letting our government borrow and redirect money paid into social security by hard working tax payers. Some want to privatize social security and let the tax payer decide, well how many do you think would actually use that money to invest in their retirement? Very few! And stop pointing fingers at the ones who were lucky enough to receive their social secuirty, just like you they have the same problems trying to make ends meet.
  • by real observations Location: cs on Nov 11, 2010 at 09:59 AM
    History is repeating itself. Whenever some big power has no choice but to do without, the first thing they do is take from the hard-working people living from day to day. Colorado Springs is a perfect example with the elimination of street lights, community centers, education help, and public services. The hard-working people are still only getting the scraps from the powerful and until we finally stand up and change our way of thinking in regards to how to share the fruits of our progress and how to act like a real public servant, nothing will change.
  • by Nicole Location: Colorado Springs on Nov 11, 2010 at 09:17 AM
    Hey, is it really any surprise? We knew this was going to happen and that it was Gen X that was going to get screwed. Society seems to think that we are the "throw away" generation. We were the "latch key" kids while our parents self-indulged in their own particular lusts and self-gratification at our expense. Now, they're going to take a good chunk of our pay for their own retirement and use it all up to deny us in our old age. None of us expected to get anything because we knew this would happen. It's the policies of our parents that have rooked ours and our children's future. Do they care? No. They'll be dead and leave us with the mess. It might seem nasty and cynical, but it's true. Where were they when prayer was taken out of the schools? Who taught us what it meant to be a patriot, to work hard for what one wants, to self-sacrifice for others, to respect others and their property, to respect God, and to stand up to injustice regardless of the cost? Few, if anyone.
  • by Nath Location: Colo Spgs on Nov 11, 2010 at 07:56 AM
    To Mr.'s Bowles (CFR) and Simpson: It's the spending stupid!!! It was pointed out during the last week that federal employee hiring and pay rates have exploded over the past 5 years, with thousands of employees now earning up to $160,000 per year with exceptional benefits not available to workers in the private sector. The list of areas these two "experts" compiled hits the taxpayers hardest (which would be expected coming from politicians) instead of reducing the size and scope of government. 50 years ago ALL interest payments were deductable. Today, home mortgage interest is the only one I know of left and these idiots suggest doing away with it too. My list would include elimination of all funds going to special interest groups like ACORN, yes they are still getting federal funding and no, they haven't gone away. There would be no more foreign aid, payments to the U.N. or foreign military aid. Then I would start reducing the Fed payroll through attrition and agency elimination.
  • by sheesh Location: cs on Nov 11, 2010 at 07:00 AM
    First start cutting entitlement programs, government employee wages, government lawmaker wages. Stop wasting tax dollars on entitlements for illegals. Do not give them the child credit anymore as well.
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