Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-MASS) has embraced her role as a champion of the middle class, and wants to give the American people the bonus they deserve. In response to a recent study which showed that the CEOs of the 350 biggest corporations received a 3.9% raise last year, Warren has filed a bill to give all Social Security beneficiaries and veterans the same raise – and paying for it by taxing those same CEOs.
Social Security beneficiaries, for only the third time since 1975, will not receive a cost-of-living adjustment in the 2016 budget. Warren is very displeased with this news, and has filed the Seniors and Veterans Emergency Benefits Act to rectify the situation. “Social Security benefits are supposed to be indexed to inflation so that benefits rise when prices go up. But Congress’s formula is volatile and does a poor job of reflecting what older Americans actually spend” she announced in a press release.
This one-time gift of $580 will be paid for by removing a tax code provision that allows corporations to deduct a portion of executive salary from their taxes for “performance-based” bonuses. Her bill is a direct transfer of wealth from the ultra-rich to every day Americans and a warning shot at Republican austerity hawks like Paul Ryan, who are determined to privatize Social Security and turn it into another tool for Wall Street to profit off the American people. The Social Security program is one of the most sacred covenants made between the American people and their government, and we cannot allow the right-wing to break it. Social Security is not “entitlements;” it is our reward for a lifetime of taxes and our years of toil as productive members of American society.
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Opinion columnist and former editor-in-chief of Occupy Democrats. He graduated from Bennington College with a Bachelor's degree in history and political science. He now focuses on advancing the cause of social justice and equality in America.