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Back of senior wearing t-shirt that says
The AARP has completed a new poll stating the really obvious: seniors, all seniors regardless of party, really hate the idea of a chained CPI.
The AARP reveals that 70 percent of voters age 50-plus oppose the use of the chained CPI to cut benefits, and two-thirds of them—including 60 percent of Republicans—say they would be “considerably less likely” to support a congressional candidate if he or she backed a new way of calculating consumer prices. And 84 percent of voters over 50 say Social Security has no place in budget-deficit discussions, since it is self-financed. [...]

“The chained CPI reduction snowballs over time and would increase taxes for most taxpayers — at the same time that it cuts benefits for children, veterans, widows, retirees, and people with disabilities,” said AARP executive vice president Nancy LeaMond in a statement. “As this survey shows, older Americans oppose the chained CPI and they’ve historically made their opinions known to their elected officials.” [emphasis added]

You can expect seniors to continue to make their opinions know to their elected officials, now that the chained CPI is officially ensconced in the president's budget. More than 100 House Democrats have told the president that they are opposed to the proposal, which makes sense since they are the ones getting most of those calls.

So far, a handful of senators have expressed their opposition. Sen. Bernie Sander says he will do "everything in my power" to block the proposal. Sens. Tom Harkin and Jeff Merkley have also publicly stated their opposition. That's following the voice vote on the Senate budget rejecting the proposal.

So, the Republican House budget doesn't contain the chained CPI. The Senate rejected it. The most vocal elected Democrats are opposed to it, perhaps with the exception of Nancy Pelosi. Right now, the President is pretty much on his own with this proposal, without a constituency. Speaker Boehner has already rejected it and the people who will be hurt by it hate it. So why is it going to be in his budget, again?

Originally posted to Joan McCarter on Fri Apr 05, 2013 at 12:06 PM PDT.

Also republished by Social Security Defenders and Daily Kos.

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