Deb Fischer on Social Security



Raise retirement age & limit benefits

Fischer and Kerrey agreed that the government must transform its entitlement programs, including scaling back Social Security, but Kerrey charged that Fischer's plan for cutting federal spending was impractical and would cause serious damage to the economy.

The two also disagreed on how to reform federal programs like Social Security and Medicare. Kerrey's plan would expand the payroll tax to higher income levels and would gradually increase the age of eligibility for benefits to 69 in 2075. Fischer's plan would increase the retirement age for people who are now younger than 40 and would limit benefits for the wealthy.

Both candidates strived to take cautious, balanced positions when asked whether America has become an entitlement nation. Fischer distanced herself from Mitt Romney's statement in which he said 47% of Americans don't pay income taxes and many feel entitled to government support; Fischer said, "People sometimes need help and government should be there for them."

Source: Beatrice Daily Sun on 2012 Nebraska Senate debate , Sep 28, 2012

Don't change benefits for people over the age of 40

FISCHER: I believe that we cannot change the benefits for people over the age of 40. We need to be honest with our younger citizens in this country. They all know, you all know, that the programs you have aren't sustainable. But if the government is honest with you, saying that things need to change--that maybe those under 40 need to look at means testing, maybe we need to look at changing the age of eligibility--then our younger citizens can make plans. But we need to have a government that's honest.

KERREY: What she's saying, basically, is that if you're over 40, you're not going to have to participate in the solution. The question is not: Are we going to keep our commitments? But the question is: Are we going to do the right thing for our future?

Source: 2012 Nebraska Senate debate excerpts , Sep 28, 2012

System is unsustainable and must be reformed

Q: How would you protect Social Security for today's seniors and strengthen it for future generations?

A: The current Social Security and Medicare systems are unsustainable and must be reformed. I believe we must honor our commitment to those who are already on Social Security or those approaching eligibility. For those 40 years old and under, we need to look at raising the eligibility age and means testing.

Source: Lincoln Journal Star in 2012 AARP Senate Voter Guide , Aug 24, 2012

Look at means testing & higher retirement age

Kerrey said he supports the federal health care reform enacted in 2010 and knows it is unpopular with many Nebraskans. He said those people should vote for Fischer.

Fischer spoke about possible changes to Social Security, while noting many lawmakers won't take a stand on the topic. "We need to look at means testing. We need to look at (raising) the eligibility age," she said.

Source: Sioux City Journal on 2012 Nebraska Senate debate , May 17, 2012

Rated 10% by ARA, indicating a pro-privatization stance.

Fischer scores 10% Alliance for Retired Americans

Scoring system for 2014: Ranges from 0% (supports privatization and other market-based reforms) to 100% (supports keeping federal control over Trust Fund and Social Security system).

About ARA (from their website, www.RetiredAmericans.org):

The Alliance for Retired Americans is a nationwide organization, founded in May 2001, with now over 4.2 million members working together to make their voices heard in the laws, policies, politics, and institutions that shape our lives. The mission of the Alliance for Retired Americans is to ensure social and economic justice and full civil rights for all citizens so that they may enjoy lives of dignity, personal and family fulfillment and security.

Source: ARA lifetime rating on incumbents of 113th Congress 14_ARA on Jan 1, 2013

Other candidates on Social Security: Deb Fischer on other issues:
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