By Saul Anuzis, President 60 Plus Association
There’s no arguing the fact that Social Security and Medicare funds will be exhausted in the coming years. Reports have shown that Medicare funds will run dry in 2028, while the trust fund reserves for Social Security will be unable to pay full benefits starting in 2034. This is a serious crisis that most politicians refuse to even discuss.
In recent interviews, Wisconsin U.S. Sen. Ron Johnson took the crucial step to bring this topic to a national conversation. Many media outlets and commentators followed along while Democrats falsely accused Senator Johnson of wanting to “destroy” Social Security and Medicare.
As the President of the 60 Plus Association, I greatly appreciate Johnson for bringing this topic to the national conversation because it is one that has been ignored for quite some time. Our association advocates for common-sense policy that will accurately represent members of our senior and retirement community.
For far too long, our “leaders” have refused to even discuss the viability of these dying programs. However, much like his approach on many other issues, Johnson has been willing to approach this crisis head-on and analyze our programs from a business-minded perspective.
Senator Johnson believes that Social Security and Medicare are two essential programs that need to be protected and their long-term viability guaranteed for generations to come. He has always been a strong advocate for the senior community so they can enjoy their retirement just like past generations of Americans. The generation before us created Social Security, and Johnson is fighting to ensure their programs remain solvent for our children and grandchildren. That will not happen if we continue steering on our current path.
Our economy continues to spiral out of control with record-high inflation, increased grocery costs, and supply chain shortages. These problems disproportionately affect people on fixed incomes — like most seniors. While the Democrats increase taxes and spending that make our economic conditions even worse, we must ensure that the programs that our seniors depend on — Social Security and Medicare — are preserved and maintained for generations to come.
Johnson’s opponent is not an advocate for the economic prosperity of American families, small businesses, and seniors. Lt. Gov. Mandela Barnes is on record supporting higher taxes on nearly every American and spending trillions more that we don’t have. Those sorts of policies won’t only hurt our economic vitality, they’ll further endanger Social Security and Medicare.
The agenda of the Democrats has put seniors’ livelihoods at risk, and Barnes will be just another vote for these reckless policies. As much as ever, we need common-sense leadership to protect seniors and put our country back on the right track.
We have made the promise to our retirees that they will be guaranteed the benefits they have paid into throughout their careers. However, we cannot rely on leaders who pretend that these benefits will continue to exist in perpetuity without reform.
Our nation needs leaders who are willing to have the tough conversations that are needed to protect our seniors’ livelihoods, even if it opens up lines of attacks from their political opponents. That is what real leadership looks like, and Johnson has proved to be a true leader for the people of Wisconsin.
The conversation around the viability of Social Security and Medicare is one that has been sitting on the sidelines for far too long, and Johnson has made it very clear that he is willing to take actions to guarantee that those who have already paid into the program will experience the benefits.
Saul Anuzis is president of 60 Plus the American Association of Senior Citizens, a right-leaning nonprofit advocacy group based in the Washington, D.C. area.