The Joplin Globe, Joplin, MO


August 20, 2013

Your View: Expand benefits

GRANBY, Mo. — During the Great Depression, Americans had no Social Security benefits to help tide them over during the hard times.

Now we had the Great Recession, and what is happening? Congress wants to cut our Social Security benefits. While members of Congress continue to vote themselves raises and continue to have access to health care and retirement benefits, they want to cut our Social Security benefits. While I really have no problem with our government officials having decent salaries, I do have a problem when they use their positions to cut our benefits.

I keep hearing about cutting the waste from our system (which I have no problem with) and cutting unnecessary spending (which I agree with), but apparently our definitions of waste and necessity vary greatly. I consider food, housing and medicine pretty necessary. Unfortunately, an awful lot of people I come in contact with are having to make difficult decisions about which of these necessities they need most and which they can stretch their Social Security to pay for.

The needs of the American people are just as vital as the needs of those in Congress. I do urge Rep. Billy Long, R-Mo., and Sen. Roy Blunt, R-Mo., and Sen. Claire McCaskill, D-Mo., to vote for the plan to expand Social Security being proposed by Sen. Tom Harkin, D-Iowa, and Sen. Mark Begich, D-Ala.

Janice Reed


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