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Chairman Smith: Bad News for Seniors Lurks Between the Lines of Medicare and Social Security Trust Fund Reports

April 01, 2023

Washington, D.C. – House Committee on Ways and Means Chairman Jason Smith (MO-08) pointed to the negative impacts of Democrats’ reckless spending in a statement about the 2023 Medicare & Social Security Trustees Reports:

“Thanks to President Biden’s economic failures, seniors’ hard-earned benefits are further under threat. Social Security’s combined trust funds are expected to become insolvent a full year sooner than forecast in the previous report as a result of a slowed economy and Democrats’ inflation continuing to outpace wage growth. And Medicare’s latest report comes amidst Biden’s plans to slash seniors’ access to innovative new cures and treatments.

“We need to protect and strengthen Social Security and Medicare, and the first step to accomplishing that is growing the economy – not budget gimmicks or tax increases that hold back economic growth. In fact, that’s precisely what Americans are telling the Ways and Means Committee during our hearings throughout the country.

“Ways and Means Republicans are laser-focused on restoring our economic prosperity, protecting seniors’ hard-earned benefits, and fighting the inflation created by Democrats’ reckless spending.”

Key Background:

Social Security: The Social Security Trustees Report for 2023 was released on Friday providing insight into the rocky future of the program as President Biden’s economic policies continue to fail.

  • Lower projected levels of economic growth – a consequence of President Biden’s economic policies – only added to the already worsening long-term program deficits – including moving up the potential exhaustion date of the program’s trust funds.
  • The combined Social Security Trust Funds are projected to become exhausted in 2034, and the Old-Age and Survivors Insurance Trust Fund is projected to be unable to pay full benefits starting in 2033, both one year sooner than in last year’s report.
  • The Trustees continue to project Social Security’s total costs to grow faster than its income, particularly given the slowing Biden economy.

Medicare: The Medicare Trustees Report for 2023 was also released on Friday:

  • The Hospital Insurance Trust Fund’s long-term outlook continues to worsen as expenditures outpace revenues creating a $4.4 trillion shortfall.
  • Under current law, total Medicare spending is expected to nearly double as a percentage of America’s economic growth over the next 25 years.
  • The Medicare Advantage program continues to be more popular than ever with private plan enrollment more than doubled between 2013 and 2022.