Biden administration Thursday, when testifying before a Senate committee, Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen was subjected to a very public fact check.
TheBlaze reports that Louisiana Republican Sen. Bill Cassidy criticized Yellen over President Joe Biden’s planned $6.8 trillion budget, stating that the budget proposal does not address possible Social Security insolvency risks.
Furthermore, despite the possibility of insolvency, Cassidy added that the president seems indifferent about establishing a bipartisan solution, since he has declined to meet with a group of upper chamber senators, despite Yellen’s assertion that Biden “stands ready to work with Congress.”
During his questions at the Senate Finance Committee meeting last week, Cassidy stated that “the president continues insisting he does not want Social Security cutbacks,” yet he appears ignorant that when the program “goes under” in around nine years, existing recipients will face a 24 percent decrease.
Yellen declared that the president desired to “strengthen” Social Security, prompting Cassidy to submit his own budget plan.
“In the $4.5 trillion of taxes the president has proposed, are any of those taxes going to shore up Social Security?” Cassidy said. “I actually know that answer … of the $4.5 trillion in taxes he has proposed, not a dime is going to shore up Social Security.”
Cassidy then asked a far simpler question.
“Why doesn’t the president care?” Cassidy asked.
“He cares very deeply,” Yellen responded.
“Then where is his plan?” Cassidy asked.
“He stands ready to work with Congress –” Yellen began, before Cassidy fired back with his fact-check.
“That’s a lie!” Cassidy said.
“Because when a bipartisan group of senators has repeatedly requested to meet with him about Social [Security], so that someone who is a current beneficiary will not see her benefits cut by 24 percent, we have not heard anything on our request.”
He added the group had “made multiple requests to meet with the president. Now you can’t comment on that. I realize that, but that is a fact,” he said.
“If you’ve been told to say, ‘He stands ready to meet’ — I will tell you there’s absolutely no evidence because we have not gotten our meeting.”
Although Committee Chairman Sen. Ron Wyden of Oregon, a Democrat, stated that accusing Yellen of lying was “over the line,” Senator Mary Landrieu of Louisiana politely stated that the allegation was false.
Republican Wisconsin Sen. Ron Johnson blasted the administration for its apparent lack of care over the status of Social Security and the amount of money being added to the national debt, as well as the fact that she didn’t know basic facts off the top of her head.
“Are you concerned, when you take the debt from $32 to $50 trillion, are you concerned who’s going to buy that debt and also at what rate?” Johnson asked Yellen. “They’ll expect to be compensated for buying riskier and riskier debt. Are you concerned about that?”
Yellen was not, insisting that “if the real net interest cost of the debt remains low relative to GDP and we’re on a sustainable fiscal” path, things would work out.
“Well, we’re not on a sustainable path,” Johnson responded. “Sen. Cassidy was talking about the president’s demagoguery on Social Security, unwillingness to meet to try to save Social Security. If we do nothing and the Social Security trust fund runs out in 2023 to 2025, about the end of the budget period, are you concerned about — are we going to have the financial wherewithal to plus up those promises? I mean, do you think we’re going to, with $50 trillion in debt, a debt succeeding [sic] our GDP, aren’t you concerned about our inability to honor those promises?”
Obviously not, and that is the problem
The Biden administration brags about Social Security in the same manner it brags about everything else. The issue is that it is only chatter. Unless one is a motivating speaker, words do not generate income. Speech does not pay the bills. Dialogue doesn’t make our debt bearable.
Conversations with a bipartisan group of senators may be fruitful.
As Thursday indicated, however, this is unlikely to occur anytime soon.