Debt Ceiling Passes – How Does It Affect Seniors?
The debt ceiling bill passed Congress yesterday which is good news for the country as a whole but many seniors are wondering how it will affect them. With all the horse-trading and compromising finally over, the news looks good (at least in the short term) for the elderly.
Most major programs of interest will be protected under the deal including Social Security, Medicaid, veteran’s benefits and pensions, civil and military pay and programs for women, infants and children. The deal does not raise taxes (due to Republican insistence) and will cut spending by over $900 billion starting in October.
What happens after this bill remains to be seen. A bipartisan committee has been tasked with finding another $1.5 trillion in savings later this year and that could definitely affect some of the aforementioned programs. Seniors may want to hope that Washington continues to struggle with compromising because if the committee fails to reach an agreement, automatic cuts would occur and Social Security would be safe again.
Everyone should be glad that a government shutdown was avoided but this process left an ominous future for new agreements and put many important programs at risk. We’ll just have to wait and see.