Jim DeMint on Social Security

Last Updated : Dec 15, 2010


Senator DeMint is a strong proponent for reforming social security system so that the system is solvent and to prevent the federal government from spending the social security taxes on other items.

In 2005, Senator DeMint President Bush's reform policies which would have allowed younger workers to use personal savings accounts to store the money that would have been taken in the form of social security taxes. Senator DeMint stated that while some people say that taxes for social security are too low and others say benefits are too high the actual fundamental problem with Social Security is that it does not save the money paid in by American workers. He stated that the current system was a fraud which people were told their money was placed in an account, but the money was spent and IOUs put in it's place. He also asserted that personal savings accounts will transform Social Security from a system of IOUs into a legally-binding guarantee and that with savings accounts, Americans can protect their taxes and build a family nest egg for their retirement.

Senator DeMint also wrote an op-ed in 2005 that warned of an impending fiscal crisis if the solvency of the social security system was not addressed soon.

The social security administration is required to send a statement to each worker over the age of 25 which tells the worker how much they have paid in and how much they have owed. In 2005, Senator DeMint put forth the "Right to Know Act." This act would have forced the federal government to append a statement which tells young workers that the benefits encapsulated in that statement are promises and not guarantees. 

Senator DeMint has been a consistent and vocal supporter of ensuring that the surplus funds taken in by social security are placed into a separate fund to be used by the social security recipients and not used for other items. He has stated that if such a program were in placed in a private business, the people enacting the system would be placed in jail. He asserts that the money taken from social security also masks the true size of the federal deficit and enables further wasteful spending. He has put forth amendments to force the money being taken in by social security to be used for social security recipients or placed into savings accounts and not spent on other items. 


Press Statement - Personal Accounts

In January of 2005, Senator DeMint issued a press statement noting his support for pending reform to the social security system.


Press Statement - Right to Know Act

In February of 2005, Senator DeMint released a press statement noting legislation he had introduced to give each American the right to know the financial condition of social security.


Press Statement - Amendment

In March of 2005, Senator DeMint released a press statement noting an amendment that he recently passed which stated that each Senator should be held accountable if social security is not addressed soon.


Press Statement - Raiding Social Security

In June of 2005, Senator DeMint released a press statement noting his support for legislation that would prevent the House from acquiring funds from the social security trust funds.


Op-Ed: Fiscal Storm is Coming

In October of 2005, Senator DeMint wrote an op-ed noting his belief that the social security program was developing into a fiscal storm that would be more damaging than the hurricanes which had recently passed through the gulf coast.


Op-Ed: The Need for Reform

In 2005, Senator DeMint also noted that there was a need to reform the social security system in an op-ed he wrote for the small business matters magazine.


Press Statement - Surplus Amendment

In March of 2006, Senator DeMint released a press statement noting a vote on an amendment that he sponsored to prevent the Congress from using social security surpluses to fund other projects. The amendment failed, and Senator DeMint referred to the 53 Senators who voted to use those surpluses as voted to raid the fund.


Press Statement - Raiding the Social Security Surplus

In March of 2007, Senator DeMint released another press statement noting his opposition to continued efforts by the Democrats to spend the social security surplus. Senator DeMint released another statement in 2008.


Floor Speech - Raiding the Surplus

Senator DeMint spoke on the Senate floor in March of 2007 about an amendment he was authoring to stop the raid on the social security surplus.



The State of Social Security

In March of 2008, Senator DeMint released a statement noting that condition of social security and a the trustee's report which showed it to be on an unsustainable path.


Official 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. Jim DeMint voted against the legislation.

Jim DeMint voted against 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. Jim DeMint voted in favor of the amendment to create a reserve fund for social security.

Jim DeMint voted in favor of the amendment to create a reserve fund for social security.


Sponsored and Cosponsored Legislation

Session-111; Bill Number-S 677; Reforming an Entitlement through Premium Adjustments based on Income Resources (REPAIR) Act of 2009 - Cosponsor

Amends part D (Voluntary Prescription Drug Benefit Program) of title XVIII (Medicare) of the Social Security Act to require an income-related reduction in the part D premium subsidy. Declares that, in the case of an individual whose modified adjusted gross income exceeds a certain applicable threshold amount for a month after December 2009, the monthly amount of the part D premium subsidy shall be reduced (and the monthly beneficiary premium shall be increased) by the monthly adjustment amount determined according to a specified formula.

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