June 14, 2024
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  • House Budget Committee Holds Hearing to Sound the Alarm on Looming Medicare and Social Security Insolvency

    WASHINGTON, D.C. – Yesterday, House Budget Committee Chairman Jodey Arrington (R-TX) and members of the Committee held an oversight hearing entitled “Medicare and Social Security: Examining Solvency and Impacts on the Federal Budget.”

    This was the first time since 2012 that the chief actuaries for the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) and the Social Security Administration (SSA) testified together to Congress. This was also the first time the current chief actuary for CMS testified to any committee.

    The hearing represents a meaningful step toward enforcing oversight of government spending programs and Sounding the Alarm on the looming insolvency of Medicare and Social Security.

    The Social Security Board of Trustees projects that the Social Security Old-Age and Survivors Insurance (OASI) trust fund will become insolvent in 2033.

    The Medicare Board of Trustees projects that the Medicare Hospital Insurance (HI) Trust Fund, out of which Part A benefits for inpatient care are paid, will become insolvent in 2036.

    Watch the full hearing HERE and find highlights below.

    Chairman Jodey Arrington (R-TX):

    Trustees hearing pic

    Click HERE to watch Chairman Arrington’s opening remarks

    “This is why we also did something that was unprecedented in a decade. We passed a bipartisan commission that would have knuckleheads from both sides of the aisle, thoughtful leaders, in a bipartisan way, to look at two of the most important programs for our seniors.

    Retirement security and health care security have 60+ million people today counting on it, 10,000 people a day counting on it. My prayer is we unite, not as Republicans not as Democrats, but as Americans.

    Rep. Lloyd Smucker (R-PA):


    Click HERE to watch Rep. Smucker’s questioning

    “We all want to work to ensure that the promise of Social Security and Medicare for the people who have been paying into these systems, we want those promises to be kept. But we also know that structurally going forward, if the changes aren't made, we won't be able to do that.”

    Rep. Glenn Grothman (R-WI):


    Click HERE to watch Rep. Grothman’s questioning

    How is the health care spending per person going up relative to inflation?” -Rep. Grothman

    “In the trustees report, there has projected that those per capita costs will increase at a faster rate in the in the near future and into the future. Mostly because health care costs tend to increase faster than other sectors of the economy.” -Mr. Paul Spitalnic

    Rep. Ron Estes (R-KS):


    Click HERE to watch Rep. Estes’ questioning

    "My concern is that if nothing's done, somebody who's currently getting a $1,000 check a month is going to have their check cut to $790 if it's a 79% payable right? If nothing changes between now and then. So that's the driving force and the concern, I think on that part, we need to step up and do something about this."

    The Bottom Line:

    If Congress continues to do nothing, the cost will be great. Trust funds for Social Security and Medicare will be depleted by 2033 and 2036, respectively. This means current retirees may experience significant cuts to their benefits. If nothing is done, seniors will face a 21 percent benefits cut to their Social Security benefits and an 11 percent cut to Medicare Part A benefits.

    The House Budget Committee’s Fiscal Year (FY) 2025 Budget makes no changes to Social Security or Medicare benefits while supporting the creation of a fiscal commission to help Congress and the President save and strengthen these programs for today and tomorrow’s beneficiaries. Yesterday’s hearing was a step forward in ensuring that the threats of Social Security and Medicare insolvency are addressed with bipartisan, proactive solutions.