WASHINGTON, D.C. — On the 85th anniversary of the Social Security Act, Senator Debbie Stabenow (D-MI); James Roosevelt, former associate commissioner of the Social Security Administration and President Roosevelt’s grandson; and Sarah Conklin, a Wisconsinite and Social Security recipient, joined a call hosted by the DNC War Room to discuss Trump’s cruel threats to Social Security.
Senator Debbie Stabenow (D-MI):
“Social Security has in fact been the most important poverty-fighting program in our nation’s history, lifting millions and millions of seniors in Michigan and across the country out of poverty … We’re going to do everything possible to protect and strengthen Social Security even though President Trump is trying right now to strangle it … I’m a senior member of the Senate Budget Committee and I can tell you, he repeatedly tried to cut Social Security in his budget — about $24 billion this year.
“Now, as we know, he put together an executive order that jeopardizes Social Security’s future. And he’s threatened nearly a dozen times now to eliminate the main source of funding for Social Security if he wins in November … Seniors in Michigan and across the country are rejecting President Trump and his disastrous policies and folks know that this is very serious, he’s threatening their health and well being, and now their ability to retire with dignity.”
James Roosevelt, former associate commissioner of the Social Security Administration:
“We may take it for granted now, but passing Social Security was a herculean task in 1935. President Roosevelt fought for it because he knew it would provide desperately needed economic security to American seniors. At that time, more than half of America’s seniors lived in poverty … It worked, lifting tens of millions of people out of poverty … And the program remains the bedrock of the middle class to this day.
“Doing what [Trump’s] planning to do would devastate Social Security and Medicare, and that thereby threatens the economic stability for countless Americans. Trump’s failed coronavirus response hit seniors very hard … Now he’s going after the programs that seniors depend on … He’s going to further jeopardize the health and well being of vulnerable Americans by attacking the most important program of the New Deal, Social Security.”
Sarah Conklin, a Wisconsinite and Social Security recipient:
“The only way I’m able to afford my medications and treatments are with Medicare and Social Security … His cruel commitment to cutting Social Security is a threat to me, and so many others, especially the innumerable amount of citizens who only have Social Security as their only source of income.
“One of these people is very near and dear to us, is one of my older sisters and her husband. They do not have the benefit of a 401(k), a pension, or any savings. Social Security is what they live on. And very sadly, just on Wednesday, two days ago, their mobile home caught fire and was totally destroyed, along with everything they own. Literally the roof over their head was taken away in a very short time. For them, and many like them, if Social Security is taken away they will again have lost everything and again have no roof over their head. I trust Joe Biden and Kamala Harris to ensure this does not happen.”