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Senate rejects bonus Social Security payments

Associated Press
The Senate rejected on Wednesday a proposal to give a $250 bonus payment to people on Social Security.

The proposal, put forward by President Obama, failed 50 to 47. Republicans and Democratic budget hawks opposed adding $14 billion to the budget deficit, while Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) said the payment was needed to make up for the lack of a cost-of-living adjustment this year for beneficiaries. Disabled people and veterans also would have been eligible for the payments.

Seniors received an identical $250 bonus last year as part of the economic stimulus bill.

But economists say the payments don't do much to boost the economy since many seniors simply save the money rather than spend it.

By Post Editor  |  March 3, 2010; 8:25 PM ET
Categories:  44 The Obama Presidency , Capitol Briefing  
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Comments

This is a clear case of the "haves" not caring about the ordinary citizen. Republicans believe that most seniors are senile, but we usually remember when bread is taken out of our mouths. Also, where was the AARP in all of this?. No wonder I am no longer a member.

Posted by: fasm7700 | March 5, 2010 4:57 PM | Report abuse

This is a clear case of the "haves" not caring about the ordinary citizen. Republicans believe that most seniors are senile, but we usually remember when bread is taken out of our mouths. Also, where was the AARP in all of this?. No wonder I am no longer a member.

Posted by: fasm7700 | March 5, 2010 3:05 PM | Report abuse

I am 50 years old, and have been on social security for disability since 2000. My benefits are $1100.00 per month. Have you ever tried living on that? I am fortunate enough to have a loving father (who is 83, and living in a retirement home) who realizes this is NOT enough to live on, and gives me extra money each month. Because of that, I can pay rent without having to depend on (and go through the hassle and waiting periods for) public or low-income housing; so that I have enough to eat without having to rely on (and again go through the hassle of applying for) food stamps; so that I can afford to keep my pets, feed them well, and make sure they have great vet care;and so that I can pay my utility bills without having to rely on the whims and state of my state's budget to be able to receive assistance from said utility companies.

My best friend is 65, and receives about $950.00 per month, and receives no help from her family, even though they can afford it. Thanks to my father's generosity, I have enough to live on and even a little extra left over to help my friend buy a few groceries, and help her pay for her pet's medication (without which, her animal would die.)

I am not a social reject, I am not not some "slob" sitting around eating bon-bons and watching tv all day, loving having the gov't. support me. It's very stressful having to worry about every penny you spend each and every day. I paid into the system, and don't think it's going to break the system for all of us on disability or social security to be given a one-time payment this year of $250.00.
What DOES break the system, is having the social security fund raided every time some senator or congressman wants something for his or her state. What DOES break the system is having no regulations on companies and corporations, so that they are able to charge anything they want for essential services (utilities, groceries, health care, etc.) while the rest of us have to rely on measly COLA payments to help us try to keep up with exorbitant cost increases.

It also seems to me that the Senators - who as was quoted, make $15,000.00 a month, while I make $13,212.00 in a YEAR - have as usual missed the point. Mr. Sanders clearly indicated that the payment was intended as a relief measure, NOT to stimulate the economy.

Oh and by the way, I don't know what the percentage of 'seniors' is, compared to the percent of disabled and others who are on social security, but all people I know who are on disablity, are too poor to save the money. Most of it gets spent on food, utilities, and other basic necessities. I myself, put my $250 last year away to help pay for my pets' annual vaccinations and exams. My money was spent, and I'll say it again, on a neccessity.

Posted by: katekat88 | March 5, 2010 4:41 AM | Report abuse

Good. Our government already spends a third of our tax dollars on welfare programs for seniors in Social Security and Medicare. I love seniors as much as anyone, but it makes no sense to go around looking for ways to increase the amount of money we're transferring to them.

Posted by: jeffwacker | March 4, 2010 4:37 PM | Report abuse

Please post a list of the Senators
that voted against the Social Security bonus payments to allow the taxpayers of this country to remove them from office.

Posted by: masonberte | March 4, 2010 3:16 PM | Report abuse

Let's see.

The scum in DC care more about the unemployed, the sick, lame and lazy that want a hand out and giving ObamaCare the less than deserving individuals that they do our Seniors.

They sit in DC.. Best medical, hig paying jobs, best retirement programs, lobbyists lining their pockets and becoming Millionaires while in Office.

When is the last time they went to the grocery and bought a loaf of Bread, Gallon of milk or pumped their own gas.

The Consumer Price Index.. does not include increase in food costs, or fuel costs.

If you look at Obama and MO they only eat the best when they travel.. take friends family on vacations AT THE TAXPAYER EXPENSE.

So far the Demoncrats have spend more money than they will take in in Tax Revenue for the Year...

Unemployment benefits are at about 85- 90 weeks. Fannie and Freddie are getting additional Billions of dollars BECAUSE THEY ARE BROKE.

My thoughts are that we Need TO ORGANIZE and then vote out all CAREER politicians in BOTH parties in 2010, 2012, 2014.

WE need to take over the House and the Senate in 2010 so that in 2011 we can IMPEACH Obama for HIGH CRIMES AND TREASON against the Constitution and We the People.

That is the only way to SAVE America get rid of the scum in Washington.

Give them 50% pensions, Term limits, and make sure they help pay for their medical in retirement.

Posted by: miller515501 | March 4, 2010 2:24 PM | Report abuse

How can a Senior possibly save the $250 instead of spending it. I wonder if Congress will not pay themselves, because $15,000 a month is not enough to live on. The Senate and the House are poor people just like the rest of us Seniors, with one exception, they do not work for a living, they take welfare from the "We the People"... Obama and Congress are a joke. Obama can take his family anywhere he wants and us poor slobs have to pay for them. There is not one good person in Congress... They have become so accustom to us feeding and clothing them, they are like our little children, our bastard children... They can go and have sex with anyone they want, cheating on their wives or husbands and all they have to do is say I am sorry! That is their magic utterance, I am sorry, forgive me until next time, then forgive me again. List all the cheats you know in Congress and the White House, write all the names down, it will choke you. In Congress, Pros & Cons mean the same thing. Not a solid person in there.

Posted by: bnboftn | March 4, 2010 1:34 PM | Report abuse

Will the Post please publish a list of every senator who voted against the increase.

Posted by: Wonder2 | March 4, 2010 1:27 PM | Report abuse

Lets put this in perspective, just a little bit. First we are literally spending Trillions in rebuilding Oil Rich Iraq which had a budget SURPLUS of 65 BILLION last year. Tens of Billions which are being wasted on corruption on top of it.

We can spend a TRILLION on rescuing the "to big to fail" banks and then have them turn around and screw the taxpayer by paying out Billions in bonuses to the same people that caused the problems in the first place.

We can spend hundreds of Billions on building toys for the Generals and Admirals, who can't win a war after 8 years against an enemy using 19th century technology.

But we can't afford a lousy $250 per person (or cumulatively 13 Billion) to make life just a little easier for the elderly and disabled?

I would suggest our Pols need a definite priority adjustment. It is time to take back the country from the rich, the super rich and the obscenely rich and the flunky pols who have sold out the country in both parties.

I believe there will be a revolution in 5 or 10 years (and should be) if both parties don't start giving a damn about the average Joe again.

And if the rich and their flunkies think the military can protect them, look at the lousy job they have done in Iraq and Afghanistan, with all their expensive toys. I wouldn't bet on it!.

Posted by: nielsenharry | March 4, 2010 1:21 PM | Report abuse

I, too would be willing to pay an extra $25.00 a month. I might go to the doctor more than every 6 months as I am suppose to do and feel less guilty about doing it. I am suppose to go in at least every 6 weeks but I don't and I have told my doctor why. It saves both him...AND medicare money. So, he calls me in every 6 months and has made me promise if I get worse, I will call.

Maybe if more would do this, instead of going for every little thing, it would be better also. I get a cold or the flu, I push the fluids,rest, take supplements and after 3 days, if I am no worse, then I know I am on the mend...so why go?

Posted by: Angelgirl1 | March 4, 2010 12:20 PM | Report abuse

I am 65 relying on social security, Medicare and BC/BS if Illinois to keep me going. I would love to receive a $250 check from my country, but I would rather the $250 be used to save the future for my grandchildren and great grandchildren (as well as yours). The truth is we will all have to make sacrifices to give us all the future that I know can be.

Additionally, I would willing to pay an additional $25 a month for my Medicare benefits. I pay $98 a month now. I know not everyone can afford to do that. I want people to know that Medicare has been wonderful for me and many of my friends and acquaintances. My thought is that Medicare coverage is invaluable. If I were allowed to make that 25$ contribution, would it save Medicare? There are so many people who can afford to do it, would they say yes?, it is worth an extra $25. Are there other people out there who want to save our future?

Also, those who say Social Security is failing and will not be there for many is such a lie. One simple action would be to increase the amount upon which social security tax must be paid....it was those of us in lower tax brackets who paid every month of our working life for social security that were made to pay even further by increasing the number of years we had to work so those who already have wouldn't have to pay additional monies. The same people who scream no to every tax increase they ever saw....TAXES ARE THE PRICE WE PAY FOR CIVILIZATION. Quoted from someone I don't remember, but which stays in my mind.

I am not stupid. My above comments will work only if we elect people who are serious about guarding every cent collected by taxation.....we have to remove the cheaters, the thieves and the ignorant we have voted for or whom we have allowed in by not voting. But first money must be spent to rescue this country. There IS a way to save the future. Don't let the naysayers run off with our country. We need the sensibilities of both political parties...only those willing to work together...to go to where we need to be.

Posted by: lejones11 | March 4, 2010 11:45 AM | Report abuse

At 81 I know the spending has to stop and this is a start. NOW stop the atrocious health care bill that will add billions to our deficit. Start over and pass a health care bill that will insure millions of families and young people who cannot afford insurance. Leave out all the giveaways and stick with the job of protecting the families from disaster.

Posted by: Kansas28 | March 4, 2010 11:13 AM | Report abuse

It is good that they are curtailing spending. I guess those older people who are between retirement age and and are disabled, and the seniors, wouldn't have to worry so much if their children would step up to the plate and take them in and take care of them as children ought to do as in days of old. So, I am sorry if the seniors, or the disabled spent 35 years or more working, paying into social security and medicare, and we are not realizing about, or taking into consideration the "younger" more "capable" generation who are having a hard time because they can't afford their big screen tv`s, sports cars, Nintendo for their children, booze and steaks every night, along with their big houses, designer clothes and keeping up appearances. (I speak from experience in what I see from some) My own go on cruises every year.

I am working tirelessly on the computer, writing the senate and congress, signing petitions and making calls doing what I can to stop some of the pork, stimulus and Obama care going through so the "next generation" and my grandchildren won't have to pay off this debt. But those who elected this man also have to live with what he has done.

I am disabled. I miss working. I apologize that my body has completely fallen apart. It was in the genes. I am now at the age where my mother was when she died.

Yes, some of us worry how we are going to get through month to month, but by the grace of God. Some of us weren't smart enough to realize that we were to be struck down in our prime of life and didn't have the opportunity to build up a "nest egg". Some of us didn't realize that when we became "less than" our husbands would up, quit their job and walk out, refusing to help pay the debts after running them up, stealing 3-4 months of mortgage before they left putting us so far behind that things were hopeless.

So yes Seniors, shame on us for not considering the current generation, that has no job security or benefits, health or retirement. Hopefully they have learned from us seniors and disabled, and have put away much of their money for a nest egg. After all, we earned so much more "then" than they do "now.

I also hope the senate doesn't vote themselves a pay raise but in fact, a pay CUT to help the economy. But I know, living on 250,000.00 a year must be so tough!

Posted by: Angelgirl1 | March 4, 2010 11:12 AM | Report abuse

Good for the senate. Somehow, this administration's spending has to be curtailed. Hopefully, this is a start.

As a child, I thought social security was good. As a young adult, I wondered how it could be sustainable. As a mature adult, I have learned that what I suspected as a young adult is true. Social Security is a ponzi scheme which will collapse of its own weight without major revisions. As it is now, watch for new taxes to maintain the status quo as Congress squirms and has to face the fact that they have squandered the social security funds through other programs and now must pay for their errors.

BTW, I'm on disability and didn't want the extra funds this year or any other year before that. I am one of those who would save it.

Posted by: gfafblifr | March 4, 2010 10:31 AM | Report abuse

I hope the Senate, in its wisdom, also rejects an increase in their own salary, which I imagine would add quite a lot to the deficit. I also hope they do not save any of their money, but use it to aid the economy.

Posted by: zephyrffld | March 4, 2010 10:13 AM | Report abuse

Good!! It means my wife won't get a check, but if we have to borrow it from China, then we will do without. Time to stop spending - All spending.

Posted by: MikeS651 | March 4, 2010 9:48 AM | Report abuse

I care very much about seniors, my mother is 90. However, when will the seniors start caring about the current generation who will never have the job security, job benefits - health or retirement, and the overwhelming debt they are incurring from the senior entitlements. I think it is time to means test all entitlements.

Posted by: doucettebetty | March 4, 2010 8:41 AM | Report abuse

Where do they come up with these asinine statements like the seniors will just save this money instead of putting it back in the economy. I think most of the seniors are not saving anything with the cost of living these days. I think any payment would probably go to rent, or utilities, or other bills that are draining the typical senior dry. Of course these old ***holes that we have elected and trusted to look out for our welfare wouldn't know anything about the senior that has to scrimp and make every penny count. They have lost all touch with the people that they are sworn to represent. I hope that these people can sleep good at night knowing that they are forcing some seniors to sleep with their furnaces turned down to conserve heat, some seniors will go to bed with empty stomachs, some will go to bed with stress about how they are to pay their rent or utilities. But not the scum that votes to make their existence miserable. They know that they will sleep warm and their stomachs will not growl and keep them awake all night and they know that the bills will be paid.

Posted by: racam | March 3, 2010 11:25 PM | Report abuse

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