Bipartisanship Key to Preserving Social Security and Medicare

Mar 25, 2008
Press Release


WASHINGTON, DC –Today the trustees of the Social Security and Medicare trust funds released their annual report to Congress on the status and projected condition of the funds over the next 75 years. Today’s report offered a reminder of the need for bipartisan cooperation to address the projected funding shortfalls in the trust funds. According to the trustees, the Social Security trust fund will remain solvent through 2041, while Medicare will remain solvent until 2019. Both estimates are the same as projected last year.


Ways and Means Committee Chairman Charles B. Rangel (D-NY) joined Health Subcommittee Chairman Pete Stark (D-CA) and Social Security Subcommittee Chairman Michael McNulty (D-NY) in issuing the following statements on today’s report:


Chairman Rangel:


"Social Security and Medicare provide millions of Americans with an essential base of economic security, providing both health insurance and a secure monthly income. The Trustees Report reminds us of the need for Democrats and Republicans to set aside partisanship to ensure the stability of these irreplaceable insurance programs for generations to come. While Social Security and Medicare face challenges in the coming years, there is no question we will do what we have to in order to restore long-term financial stability to these programs."


Health Subcommittee Chairman Stark:


"Reports of Medicare’s death have been greatly exaggerated. Though the trigger has been pulled by Republican ideologues, this year’s Trustees Report shows that Medicare remains solvent and sustainable."

"The trigger is an arbitrary threshold designed to scare people into thinking we can`t afford to continue Medicare as an entitlement. The fact is that we can`t afford not to."

"Through the years, Congress has regularly modified and modernized Medicare to accommodate advances in medicine and meet the demands of a growing population. I look forward to working with colleagues on both sides of the aisle to ensure Medicare`s viability for future generations."


Social Security Subcommittee Chairman McNulty:


"The Trustees Report is an annual reminder of the value of Social Security for millions of retirees, severely disabled persons, and survivors, as well as the importance of ensuring its long-term stability.  The challenges facing the program in the coming decades are the most manageable when we can work together to strengthen Social Security`s guaranteed benefits for future generations, so they can count on Social Security just as today`s retirees do."