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Monday, March 11, 2013

Retirees will lose big with chained CPI


AARP Urges Congress to Oppose Cuts to Social Security and Veterans Benefits

(Peoria, AZ) – As President Obama heads to Capitol Hill to push his deficit reduction plan, AARP urged the Arizona congressional delegation to oppose the so-called ‘chained CPI,’ which would make significant cuts to Social Security and veterans benefits in Arizona according to a new analysis based on data from the Congressional Budget Office (CBO).

The chained CPI – also called the ‘superlative CPI’ – would change the way the cost-of-living adjustment, or COLA, is calculated for Social Security and veterans’ compensation, cutting benefits for seniors and veterans who are already stretched by prescription drugs, utilities and health care costs.  And as they get older, it only gets worse because the cut would start now and get bigger every year, hitting people the hardest as they age and have exhausted much of their savings. Using data from the CBO and the Departments of Veterans Affairs and Defense, AARP calculates that adoption of the chained CPI would result in Arizona’s retirees and veterans losing $3 billion over a 10-year period.

“The chained CPI is a stealth benefit cut that is currently on the table in Washington,” said David Mitchell, AARP Arizona State Director.  “This cut would be especially harmful because it would start now and grow worse over time, taking money out of the pockets of seniors and veterans as they get older.”

The AARP analysis showed that nationally, retirees and veterans would see their benefits cut by $146 billion over that 10-year period.  Individuals can see how their personal benefits would be affected at www.aarp.org/whatyoulose.

“The chained CPI would cut Social Security and veterans’ benefits and break the promises politicians have made to protect benefits for today’s seniors.  It would also mean lower benefits for future generations of Americans,” concluded Mitchell. “We urge Arizonans to contact their representatives in Congress and tell them not to accept the chained CPI as part of any budget deal.”

AARP is a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization, with a membership of more than 37 million, that helps people turn their goals and dreams into real possibilities, strengthens communities and fights for the issues that matter most to families such as healthcare, employment security and retirement planning. We advocate for consumers in the marketplace by selecting products and services of high quality and value to carry the AARP name as well as help our members obtain discounts on a wide range of products, travel, and services.  A trusted source for lifestyle tips, news and educational information, AARP produces AARP The Magazine, the world's largest circulation magazine; AARP Bulletin; www. aarp.org; AARP TV & Radio; AARP Books; and AARP VIVA, a bilingual news source.  AARP does not endorse candidates for public office or make contributions to political campaigns or candidates.  The AARP Foundation is an affiliated charity that provides security, protection, and empowerment to older persons in need with support from thousands of volunteers, donors, and sponsors. AARP has staffed offices in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands. Learn more at www.aarp.org.

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