Fact-checkers Sputter And Flop Attempting To Explain How Social Security Works, Affects Deficit
Jason Linkins,Ryan Grim
“Instead of confusing itself and its readers, the AP and the rest could simply have referred to a 2011 Senate hearing, chaired by Max Baucus (D-Mont.), during which two of the foremost Social Security experts — one liberal, one conservative — answered the question.
Nancy Altman, head of Social Security Works, which opposes cuts to the program, read the law to the lawmakers. “The law is unambiguous. So let me read it: Social Security ‘shall not be counted for purposes of the congressional budget,’” she read.
“Social Security is not part of the budget. So that $14.3 trillion debt that we are at, the limit that you are going to have to raise — or at least have to vote on whether to raise in a few months — if you cut Social Security, that $14.3 trillion does not change. It does not put any room into the debt limit.”
Baucus turned to Charles Blahous, a Social Security trustee who is also with the conservative Hoover Institution. “Do you agree with that, Dr. Blahous?”
“I do agree with that,” he said.”