Government and Politics
January 12, 2023
Cole, LaTurner Reintroduce Bipartisan Social Security Commission Act
Washington, D.C. – Congressman Tom Cole (OK-04) and Congressman Jake LaTurner (KS-02) issued the following statements after reintroducing the Bipartisan Social Security Commission Act to address the long-term solvency of Social Security. Cole has been a lead sponsor of the bill’s introduction for six consecutive Congresses.
According to the Social Security and Medicare Boards of Trustees 2022 Annual Report, absent policy changes, Social Security’s combined trust funds will be exhausted in 2035. Modeled after the 1983 Social Security Commission, Cole’s legislation would create a bicameral and bipartisan commission, chaired by a presidential appointee, to ensure that Social Security is fully funded for decades to come.
“The solvency of Social Security is at a critical point, and millions of Americans who have paid into this program throughout their working lives may not receive the money they deserve,” said Cole. “It is time for Congress to address this issue in earnest, or these funds will dry up and leave millions of American seniors at risk. That is why my first action in the 118th Congress is the reintroduction of the Bipartisan Social Security Commission Act to find commonsense solutions that will ensure the long-term survival of this program. I am proud to join Representative LaTurner on the reintroduction of this important legislation and look forward to working with my colleagues on both sides of the aisle to save Social Security.”
"Social Security isn't just another program. It's a promise made to American seniors, and Congress must work to ensure that promise is kept," said LaTurner. "If we don't take action, Social Security will soon lack the funding to pay retirees their hard-earned benefits. I am proud to join Rep. Cole in reintroducing the Bipartisan Social Security Commission Act, which focuses on commonsense solutions to save Social Security and helps guarantee Kansans get the benefits they deserve."
Specifically, the legislation would provide for the following:
-A 13-member commission, the Commission on Long Term Social Security Solvency, with 12 members appointed by leadership from both parties in the House and Senate (three appointees from each party’s leader in each chamber). Two of the congressional appointees must be non-elected experts.
-The commission is chaired by the 13th appointee, named by the president. The president’s appointee means that the president’s party would appoint seven members, the other party appointing six.
-Within one year of its first meeting, the commission must report to Congress on the 75-year health of Social Security and provide recommendations for how to improve the program.
-The commission’s report must have a minimum of nine votes, guaranteeing bipartisan consensus.
-The legislation based on the commission’s plan would then receive expedited consideration in Congress for an up or down vote.
Bill text is available here.