Mitch McConnell Wants To Rob Pensions To Fund Highway Repairs

mitch-mcconnell
Most Americans, at least the dwindling number of normal Americans, comprehend that investing in the nation is the responsibility of all citizens in one form or another. Over the past six years, Republicans have rejected that concept out-of-hand and concluded that if, and that is a big if, there is any investment in America it will be paid for by the poor, disabled, middle class or the elderly; particularly if the investment inordinately benefits the corporate world and big business.

It is curious that while Republicans can find enough funding for America’s greatest socialistic welfare program, the United States military and its corporate industrial complex, they perpetually complain that investing in America’s transportation system is too costly. Over the past few years, Republicans have barely came up with temporary, last minute, extensions for the highway trust fund, but this year Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell pledged to put an end to short term fixes; but only if it is funded by cutting federal employees’ retirement returns to fund the Highway Trust Fund.

McConnell did not come up with the proposed theft of federal employee’s retirement savings on his own, it originally came from House Republicans’ fiscal 2016 budget. Naturally, since the Koch brothers own Congress and they openly promote eliminating all Americans’ pensions, including Social Security, it is no surprise that the largest portion of funding for the Highway Trust Fund is due to be taken from current and future government employees. Democrats and, surprisingly, some Republicans argue vehemently that changing the relatively safe return on retirement savings’ accounts will drastically cut federal employees’ retirement and since robbing employee pensions is a favorite Republican means of upward wealth redistribution, it should not surprise any American that cutting Social Security is on the GOP’s list of possible highway funding options.

Besides cutting federal employees’ pensions, Republicans proposed eliminating Social Security pensions for any recipient with an outstanding arrest warrant regardless if they are decades old or for outstanding parking violations. According to Max Richtman,  president of the National Committee to Preserve Social Security and Medicare, “Almost none of the seniors who would be affected by this provision are actual fugitives from justice and most of the warrants in question are many years old and involve minor infractions.” Richtman also wrote in a letter to Senators that the Social Security Administration has already tried enforcing that ban “with catastrophic effect for many vulnerable elderly seniors, employing procedures that did not withstand judicial scrutiny.” But really, catastrophic effects for vulnerable seniors is par for the course for Republicans and the idea of not withstanding judicial scrutiny will have no effect on Republicans.

The other Republican proposal, and attack on Social Security, targets disabled Americans Republicans have spent no small amount of time and effort pushing to return to the workforce regardless their affliction. Republicans want to end payments of Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) if a disabled person follows Social Security rules, and Republicans pushing them to work so they can get off SSDI. Richtman noted that “Given the importance that policy makers ascribe to encouraging disabled Americans to return to the workforce, I am perplexed by the desire of some in the Congress to strip working SSDI beneficiaries of their eligibility when, through no fault of their own, they lose a job.”

Funding something as crucial to transporting Americans around the country, especially the business sector reliant on dependable roads, highways, bridges, and rail system should come primarily from the business community. However, Republicans committed to stealing Americans’ retirement savings and preventing big business from bearing any of the costs for their obscene profits will always opt to steal from regular Americans; particularly government employees’ retirement savings. It is why House Republicans and Mitch McConnell’s first call to pay for a transportation funding bill is robbing federal employee pensions instead of taxing big business or the rich who own and profit from a functioning highway transportation system.

McConnell’s Draconian proposal to cut federal employees’ pensions, or eliminate Social Security benefits for the elderly with outstanding traffic violations, or punish disabled Americans attempting to get off disability, is not going over well in the Senate. Senators James Inhofe (R-OK), Barbara Boxer (D-CA), and Senator Chuck Schumer (D-NY) have all said cutting federal pensions is “a non-starter.” In fact,  Schumer claimed that, except for siphoning money out of Social Security to pay for road, highway, and bridge projects, “the tentative menu of funding options has the support of neither the Democratic or Republican caucuses at this point.” It is noteworthy that cutting Social Security benefits is not yet on that “tentative menu” and should be a warning sign that cutting federal pensions, including members of Congress’ pensions may be “a non-starter,” but apparently cutting Social Security benefits is not.

In last year’s budget, well over half of the $1.2-plus trillion went to the military and related corporate defense contractors, and foreign governments like Israel and Saudi Arabia; during peace time. It is an abomination that Republicans and some Democrats have no problem allocating over half the nation’s expenditures for one year to the military and yet cannot fund repairs, maintenance, and rebuilding any of the country’s roads, bridges, and highways without robbing Americans’ pensions. It is not like the elderly and federal employees are the only Americans using the nation’s transportation system, or that corporations and other big businesses are not profiting from a reliable means of delivering their products.

All Americans benefit from a functioning highway system, and if all Americans were aware that once again a specific sector is expected to pay they may begin pressuring Republicans to get the funding from the people who have benefitted most from President Obama’s economic recovery success; the uber-wealthy, military industrial complex, the oil industry, and corporate America. However, as long as the Koch brothers own and operate the majority Republican Congress, and there is even a penny in the Social Security Trust Fund or any Americans’ pension account, Republicans will propose robbing the elderly to pay for projects that benefit the rich and corporations. It is, after all, just another part of their crusade to transfer all the nation’s wealth to the rich; the idea of stealing the elderly’s pensions to achieve their goals is for sheer entertainment value.

35 Replies to “Mitch McConnell Wants To Rob Pensions To Fund Highway Repairs”

  1. Just like the Reichwing rejected a bill to create 1,000,000 jobs because it would be paid for by closing tax loopholes to billionaires….

    GOP = Greedy Obscene Plutocrats

  2. I’m all for using pension funds for roads as long as they are only from the Congressional Pension Fund. How come Congressional Republicans are all for scrapping everyone but their own pensions?

  3. An increase of federal or state gas tax would only raise taxes on the working class who are not allowed to deduct the expense of gas on their income tax return. Corporations however are able to negate this “cost of doing business” expense as a deduction & thus would have no affect on them. Just yet another tax on the average American Citizen.
    Raise the taxable earnings cap for Soc Sec from a max of $114,000 to $1,000,000 to secure future SS distributions AND tax the mega wealthy’s income, $5,000,000 & higher, at 50% – 60% from the present 20%-35%. The 1% benefit the most from America’s resources & infrastructure, they need to pay for it!

  4. I wonder how absolutely low the repukes will be able to go? My husband says the hole they’re digging has no bottom, and I’m beginning to think this is the case.

  5. Our parents and grandparents bought those roads and bridges for us with their tax dollars.

    Congress was hired to maintain and improve the infrastructure we inherited from them.

    Property managers, not Quislngs.

  6. What is with this POS McConnell? He has done nothing for the American people as a Senator. Damn, I wish assholes like him could just be fired.

  7. And there is the cost of the F-35, projected total of $1,500,000,000,000.00

    And it doesn’t work. Just like the Republicans in Congress.

  8. Why shouldn’t they? It worked for Brownback in his Kansas budget. Since that worked so well for the Koch brothers, why not try it at the federal level.

    Anybody voting for a RW candidate for ANY office is a masochist, slowly cutting their own throats.

    And we have to put up with this meaningless drivel from the Republicans. There is no way that the President will allow this to pass his desk.

    When in the hell are they going to do something worthwhile? When are they going to start looking out for the country instead of their puppet masters?

    I’ll answer my own questions, NEVER. DOG, 2016 can’t come soon enough. We need to vote these poop-for-brains out of office.

  9. When federal employees were hired, they were PROMISED a pension.

    How about ending oil company subsidies, they’re making BILLIONS in profits and BILLIONS in subsidies. Why????

    Don’t raid pensions for your GOP schemes like you did with social security.

    The GOP LOVES to STEAL our $$$$

    Ronald Reagan and The Great Social Security Heist
    http://www.fedsmith.com/2013/10/11/ronald-reagan-and-the-great-social-security-heist/

    Government Owes $2.7 Trillion to Social Security. The government has embezzled all surplus Social Security revenue, generated by the 1983 payroll tax hike, and spent the money on wars and other government programs. None of the money was saved or invested in anything.
    http://www.fedsmith.com/2013/05/23/government-owes-2-7-trillion-to-social-security/

    Dumya #43
    Who Stole Your Social Security and Why?
    http://www.populistdaily.com/economics/who-stole-your-social-security-and-why.html

  10. Chuckie and Davey Koch continue to direct their
    obedient judas goats in Congress toward an
    America we shudder to imagine. Returning tax
    rates on the wealthy to around 35%, where it
    should’ve stayed, would help bring back the
    nation Ike envisioned. Oh yeah, to the good
    peeps in KY, please terminate the Turtleman
    next time he faces re-election! Jah bless.

  11. I wonder what the people who voted for him think now? Of course, they are probably oblivious to the fact that he is against their best interests.

  12. Yikes. The Hunger Games for seniors and federal workers. Why have we gone off the rails? Why is it only a matter of time before we repeat the 60’s and 70’s in the streets. Then how much will it cost?

  13. The Right will attempt to Steal 2016.
    The GOP keeps winning by CHEATING!

    How GOP Gerrymanders Away Democracy
    January 10, 2014

    Amid America’s demographic changes, Republicans have exploited every trick they can think of to stave off actual democracy, where every vote is respected and equal. One scheme has been to modernize the old practice of “gerrymandering,” as Beverly Bandler explains.

    Beverly Bandler

    In Election 2012, Democrats received 1.4 million more votes for the U.S. House of Representatives, yet Republicans won control of the House by a 234-to-201 margin. Thus, the second-biggest GOP majority in 60 years was not the will of American voters. IT WAS GERRYMANDERED!

    Or, as Republican strategist Karl Rove has said, “He who controls redistricting can control Congress.”

    https://consortiumnews.com/2014/01/10/how-gop-gerrymanders-away-democracy/

  14. I agree with him too, sadly.

    My husband, on the other hand, keeps responding with “They can’t do that!” or “No way, that’s illegal!” or my personal favorite “That’s unconstitutional!”, whenever I tell him about GOPT plans and a lot of times things they’ve already done. He doesn’t seem to get that no matter how correct he is about it being wrong, being illegal and/or being unconstitutional, they are still doing it! And that THAT is the problem.

    Literally capable of *anything*.

  15. This is a perfect example of why we need to vote for whomever wins the democratic nomination for president. The entire GOPTea has proven time and time again that they are literally capable of doing anything. No ethics. No morals. Just unabated greed.

    IMHO, I don’t believe that Hillary nor Bernie are actually capable of abandoning millions of our elderly and disabled citizens.

    NO MORE APATHY. UNITE. VOTE. BE HEARD.

  16. Gop wants to steal pensions to fund…

    Hold on, just state the core premise of the Republican Party: Gop wants to steal Pensions…

    Anything else, is superfluous.

  17. McConnell’s first attempt at a highway funding bill fails, more fighting to come

    Senate Democrats, along with 11 Republicans, temporarily blocked a highway bill negotiated by Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and Sen. Barbara Boxer (D-CA) from moving to the floor Tuesday. McConnell attempted to move the 1,030-page bill to the floor just hours after was released to members, a move that Democrats unanimously protested with their refusal to move it forward.
    http://www.dailykos.com/story/2015/07/22/1404576/-McConnell-s-first-attempt-at-a-highway-funding-bill-fails-more-fighting-to-come

  18. House Republican leader throws cold water on Senate highway bill

    Majority Leader Mitch McConnell is having some big problems with his latest attempt to prove he can govern—getting a long-term highway funding bill passed. His problems just got worse, and once again, the obstacle is the House.

    The problem deepened Wednesday, when House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy said that the Senate’s six-year highway bill will not get consideration in the House.
    McCarthy (R-Calif.), speaking to reporters outside the Republican National Committee headquarters, said “I don’t see the Senate” bill “flying in the House.”

    “This idea of a Senate bill coming together in a last minute that’s not long term, that’s not paid for, I think brings real doubt to a lot of people,” McCarthy said. The topic was discussed at a closed GOP meeting Wednesday in the Capitol Hill Club.
    http://www.politico.com/story/2015/07/senate-highway-bill-house-wont-take-up-120465.html

  19. Democrats win as Social Security cuts removed from Senate highway bill

    Senate Democrats defeated McConnell’s first effort to bring the bill to the floor for debate, arguing they didn’t have time to read the 1030-page bill in the few hours he had given them, and because of these spending provisions that hit Social Security. Immediately following that defeat, the Social Security cut to people who were concurrently receiving disability benefits and unemployment insurance was removed. The second cut, which would have ended benefits to anyone with an outstanding felony warrant, was was axed before a second procedural vote Wednesday night. Democrats pointed out that the last time this was attempted, and stymied by the courts, the government had to pay back $500 million to some 80,000 people who were wrongly cut off.
    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/social-security-cuts-for-fugitives_55b0db85e4b08f57d5d3b416?vyv9ggb9

  20. In all of these discussions, nothing is ever said about those on Private Disability Insurance, which you’ve paid for over the years. Once I was permanently disabled, I was FORCED by the private insurance company to sign up for Social Security Disability, which they reduced their payments by. In other words, I’m on Social Security several years before I should be, and ALL of the money goes to a private insurance company. Receiving SSD didn’t increase my benefit one cent. I wonder what percentage of those on SSD are also receiving private disability, and, how much money would be saved if those SSD payments weren’t made, and the insurance companies were required to pay the policies without SSD subsidizing them?

  21. You know something? Our Government could save 50 billion a year if they didn’t raise the gas tax by any kind of .04 cents….

    I’m serious. They could slap a nickel or a dime on it and we’d be good.

  22. Part of the problem, & I have seen it first hand, are people who scam the system.
    To wit: I lived for a time where I encountered about 15 different guys, aged 22 to 60, & they all were on disability, for the same reason:
    Drug use in their teen years, but more to the point ‘their back’!
    They instructed ‘new’ guys from outstate which specific doctor to see…
    Then most of them spent their money on drugs & convenience-store food, & rode their bikes across town to play frisbee-golf all day.
    One of them asked me: “So what kind of meds are you on?” I replied “Nothing”. And they didn’t believe me for a while…
    They all got jobs canvassing for Dems @ $5.00 an hour…AND NONE of them VOTED.
    This is why we have welfare, these guys were useless. The only alternative would be to kill them.
    You just cannot fix lazy & stupid.

  23. Look up ‘Corporate Raiding’ & Simplicity Pattern is a good example.

    Billionaires are applying the exact same strategies to entire STATES.

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