Legislative Update For Week Ending November 18, 2011

Legislative Update For Week Ending November 18, 2011

The Super Committee deadline looms and two important bills for seniors are introduced.

Super Committee Running out of Time

Congressional support for a bi-partisan deficit reduction solution before the November 21st deadline is dwindling as each day passes.  Republican co-chairman of the joint committee, Rep. Jen Hensarling (TX-5), expressed discontent with Democratic colleagues this week for rejecting the latest GOP offer.  “I will give my Democratic colleagues credit for at least putting some reforms on the table, but frankly they do not solve the problem,” Hensarling said.

The battle between spending cuts versus revenue increases continues to be the largest point of contention between the two sides.  Democrats are pushing a one-to-one ratio, contending that Congress has already outlined enough spending cuts in the debt limit increase law.  If the Super Committee cannot come to a compromise by the deadline, mandated across-the-board budget cuts will occur.

Sen. Sherrod Brown Introduces CPI-E Bill

Ohio Sen. Sherrod Brown announced a consumer price index bill for elderly consumers on Wednesday.  Under the Consumer Price Index for Elderly Consumers Act, the cost-of-living adjustment (COLA) would be amended to use a formula that reflects the spending patterns of seniors.  The current index is based on the spending patterns of urban workers.

Social Security Earnings Repeal Act Introduced in the House

Rep. Gene Green (TX-29) recently introduced a bill that would remove the limit for the amount of outside income that an individual could earn while receiving Social Security benefits.  The Social Security Earnings Test Repeal Act of 2011 was referred to the Committee on Ways and Means.