Scrooge GOPers Vote Down $250 Social Security Payment
December 9, 2010
(ChattahBox Political News)– Republicans and a handful of Democrats want to wish a very Happy Holiday season to struggling seniors dependent on Social Security, who have not received a cost of living increase, since 2009. Acting like a modern-day version of Ebenezer Scrooge, as the wealthiest two percent of Americans are poised to receive a tax cut windfall, both chambers of Congress voted down a bill to provide seniors a lump sum payment of $250 to compensate for the another year without a COLA. After the failed 254-153 vote in the House, Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA), said “America’s seniors deserve better.”
Last year, President Obama’s Stimulus bill authorized a lump sum payment to seniors struggling on a fixed income, with no COLA, but this year, Republican lawmaker have decided only their super-rich constituents count.
“A proposal to provide Social Security recipients with a lump sum payment of $250, intended as a modest boost in difficult economic times, was blocked Wednesday by a Republican-led opposition in the House and Senate.”
“The measure would have provided the one-time payment to 54 million Social Security recipients in lieu of an annual cost-of-living adjustment.”
“This is the second consecutive year that an automatic adjustment has not been awarded, a result of the country’s low inflation rate. Last year, Congress authorized a $250 payment to each recipient as part of the economic stimulus measure.”
Before Republicans filibustered the $250 payment in a 53-45 procedural vote, Sen. Bernard Sanders (I-VT) expressed outrage.
“People are wondering how it could be that we could provide a million dollars in tax breaks to the richest people in this country but we couldn’t come up with $250 for struggling seniors and disabled vets,” he said.
Since Social Security COLA calculations are tied to inflation, consumer prices would have to exceed the levels present during the last COLA increase, which they don’t.
But seniors are getting squeezed with higher prescription costs and increasing energy expenses to heat their homes and fill their gas tanks.
Meanwhile, the wealthy are doing better than ever, while our seniors struggle, unemployment hovers near 10 percent and Americans continue lose their homes.
Photo Source: Wikimedia/Scrooge and Bob Cratchit woodcut by John Leech (1809-1870) from A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens (1812-1870)/Public Domain.