Stimulus Negotiations and Comments on a Payroll Tax Holiday -, AMAC

Pre-recess deliberations on another coronavirus relief package are continuing amid complex and divergent viewpoints on the size and content of further relief. From a Social Security standpoint, one of the concerns continues to be the administration’s continuing push for a cut in the payroll tax born by the employed, a measure termed “absolutely insane” by James Angel, an associate professor of finance at Georgetown University’s McDonough School of Business. Given Social Security’s already precarious financial future, it’s clear to most who have studied the program’s impending insolvency problem that such a move would further advance the point at which seniors would be hit with a substantial reduction in benefits. In a post on, journalist Stephen Loiaconi provides a recap of current negotiations toward resolving the stimulus question. Check it out here…

The long-term financial problems facing Social Security are generally understood in Washington, although progress toward a solution has been slow to evolve. In the meantime, the clock has been advanced as a consequence of the COVID-19 pandemic’s ravaging of the American workforce, and the “long term” is being redefined as much nearer than even projected in the most recent Social Security Trustees Report. This means that the time to craft a palatable solution is quickly running out. Many proposals have been advanced for lawmakers’ consideration, but current crises and election-year politics are hindering progress.

The Association of Mature American Citizens (AMAC) has advanced a proposal based on the premise that Social Security must be preserved and modernized.  The AMAC proposal suggests that this can be achieved by making modest changes in cost of living calculations, adjusting the retirement age, and fine-tuning selected internal calculations–relatively slight changes that would obviate the need for additional taxes on workers.  AMAC advocates for a bipartisan compromise, “The Social Security Guarantee Act,” taking portions of bills introduced by former Rep. Sam Johnson (R-TX) and current Rep. John Larson (D-CT) and merging them with the Association’s own research.  One component is Social Security PLUS, a new, voluntary plan that would allow all earners to have more income available at retirement.  This component is intended to appeal especially to younger workers. Read AMAC’s plan here.


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