The President signed an Executive Order creating a Commission on Fiscal Responsibility and Reform.  There will be 18 members: 6 appointed by the President-2 we already know Co-Chairs former GOP Senator Alan Simpson (Wyoming) and former Clinton chief of staff Erskine Bowles. The Leadership of both parties will also appoint 6 Senators and 6 House members - equally divided between Democrats and Republicans.  Although, the GOP wants taxes taken off the table of any discussion and are threatening to not name anyone. The National Committee has long opposed creation of a commission targeting Social Security and Medicare for cuts to balance the federal books.  Our President/CEO, Barbara Kennelly, issued this statement today:
“President Obama inherited an economic nightmare.  It’s a nightmare America’s seniors are living each and every day thanks to skyrocketing health care costs, no COLA, shrinking home values, decimated savings and a shaky economy.  Seniors and their families want fiscal sanity returned to Washington; however, we should not be considering cuts to the very programs keeping millions afloat during this recovery. Social Security is not to blame for the nation’s fiscal problems and has not contributed one dime to our nation’s bleak debt and deficit picture.  To the contrary, Social Security’s trust fund surplus has been used for years to help balance the federal books.   Our hope is that this Presidential Commission will rise above the political rhetoric, do the right thing, and ensure Social Security does not become a piggy bank to pay for the fiscal failures of the past. The future of generations of Americans depends on it.”