Bill Nelson on Social Security

Last Updated : Oct 25, 2012

Summary

Privatization

In 2002, Senator Nelson refered to a move in Florida to privatize a portion of the state pension program in Florida and stated that only 3,000 of the 600,000 on that system have signed up to be a part of the privatized system. He asserted that this should be seen as a warning not to privatize the Social Security system.

In 2005, Senator Nelson spoke at an event in Palm Beach and stated that privatization would cut benefits to seniors and he was opposed to that. He stated that he would oppose diverting money from the Social Security Trust Fund, but believed that we should do something to keep Social Security solvent. In discussing making the system solvent, Senator Nelson stated that over the next three quarters of a century, the Bush tax cuts will cost about three times as much as the shortfall Social Security is facing and Medicare expenditures were projected to surpass Social Security spending in 2024.

Senator Nelson asserted that privatization will not fix Social Security, but would actually worsen the country’s overall fiscal health as that money taken out of Social Security to pay for private investment accounts will reduce the money available to pay to current beneficiaries. Finally, Senator Nelson asserted that Social Security was never meant to be an investment program and by linking benefits to volatile stock prices, privatization shifts the risk to seniors and weakens Social Security’s guaranteed safety net.

 

Soundness of Social Security

In August of 2002, Senator Nelson spoke on the senate floor about the overall topic of the soundness of the Social Security system.

 

Palm Beach Forum Club

On January 15, 2005 Senator Nelson spoke at the Palm Beach Forum Club on social security. Text of the speech was released in a press statement. Senator Nelson notes his opposition to privatization in the speech and the need to keep from reducing benefits.

 

Privatization is Risk

In February of 2005, Senator Nelson released a press statement in which he stated that social security could and should be fixed without putting benefits at risk. He noted that privatization of social security benefits puts them at risk.

 

The State of Social Security

In February of 2005, Senator Nelson spoke on the Senate floor about the solvency of social security and the trust fund statud.

 

Roosevelt's Promise

In February of 2005, Senator Nelson released a press statement noting his support for Social Security and what he called "Roosevelt's promise."

 

2012 Campaign Website Statements

 

Voting Record

Temporary Payroll Tax Cut Continuation Act of 2011

In February of 2012, the Senate voted on accepting the conference report for the Temporary Payroll Tax Cut Continuation Act of 2011. The legislation extended unemployment benefits, forced a decision on the Keystone Pipeline project, and provided for certain medicare levels. Mainly, the legislation continued the 2% employer side reduction in payroll taxes for social security. This reduction is funded by bringing money into social security from the general revenue fund, thus adding to the debt. The legislation passed the Senate 60-36. Bill Nelson voted in favor of the legislation.

Bill Nelson voted in favor of the legislation.

Amendment - Social Security Reserve Fund

In 2007, congress attempted to pass an amendment to create a reserve fund for social security. This action was prompted by the increasing awareness that the Social Security program may not be financially solvent in the near future. Opponents claimed that the move was an end-around method to privatize social security. The amendment was largely supported by Republicans and largely opposed by Democrats. The amendment failed in a 45-52 vote. Bill Nelson voted against the amendment to create a reserve fund for social security.

Bill Nelson voted against the amendment to create a reserve fund for social security.

 

Sponsored and Cosponsored Legislation

Session-111; Bill Number-S 484; Social Security Fairness Act of 2009 - Cosponsor

Amends title II (Old Age, Survivors and Disability Insurance) (OASDI) of the Social Security Act to repeal: (1) government pension offset requirements applicable to husband's and wife's insurance benefits, widow's and widower's insurance benefits, and mother's and father's insurance benefits with respect to OASDI payments; and (2) windfall elimination requirements with respect to computation of an individual's primary insurance amount.

Session-111; Bill Number-S 484; A bill to amend title II of the Social Security Act to repeal the Government pension offset and windfall elimination provisions - Cosponsor

Amends title II (Old Age, Survivors and Disability Insurance) (OASDI) of the Social Security Act to repeal: (1) government pension offset requirements applicable to husband's and wife's insurance benefits, widow's and widower's insurance benefits, and mother's and father's insurance benefits with respect to OASDI payments; and (2) windfall elimination requirements with respect to computation of an individual's primary insurance amount.

Session-110; Bill Number-S 206; Social Security Fairness Act of 2007 - Cosponsor

A bill to amend title II of the Social Security Act to repeal the Government pension offset and windfall elimination provisions.

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