75% of Virginia Voters Oppose Cuts to Social Security

A poll released this week finds that likely voters in Virginia’s 2012 election oppose cutting social security benefits in order to reduce the federal deficit.

“Social Security does not contribute a penny to the deficit, in fact it has a huge surplus. This is money that belongs to all of us who contributed our entire working lives so that we could retire with dignity. Voters want politicians in Washington to keep their hands off Social Security,” said Barbara Easterling, a Virginian and President of the Alliance for Retired Americans, which has 50,000 members in the state.

More than 1.2 million Virginians receive Social Security and nearly half of them are lifted out of poverty by the program’s modest benefits.

Key Findings:

Would you favor or oppose cutting Social Security benefits in order to reduce the federal deficit?

  • 57% of Tea Party Supporters OPPOSE cutting Social Security benefits
  • 63% of Republicans OPPOSE cutting Social Security benefits
  • 79% of Independents OPPOSE cutting Social Security benefits
  • 85% of Democrats OPPOSE cutting Social Security benefits
  • 75% of Respondents OPPOSE cutting Social Security benefits

The majority of Virginia voters opposed 3 specific proposals that would cut Social Security benefits:

  • 61% OPPOSE raising the retirement age to 69
  • 60% OPPOSE changing the COLA formula in a way that reduces the amount beneficiaries receive
  • 66% OPPOSE reducing benefits for people earning above $60,000- typically what “means-testing” would do

70% FAVOR lifting the cap to impose Social Security taxes on all wages above $106,800 and requiring both employees and employers to pay.

Call Senator Mark Warner and tell him to take Social Security off the table!
Senator Warner is a key player on the budget and has stated that he is willing
to put “everything on the table” including Social Security. Call Senator Warner
TODAY (1-877-676-2759) and let him know:

  • Social Security belongs to the people who have worked hard all their lives
    and contributed to the program.
  • It does not belong to politicians in Washington who want to use it as a piggy bank to fund tax cuts for the rich and bailouts for Wall Street.
  • Social Security does not need to be cut and we should not raise the
    retirement age, especially as we continue to give tax cuts to the wealthy.

Barbara Easterling:

Of course retirees want to cut the deficit.  We do not want a large debt to be the legacy we leave for future generations.  But there is a right way and a wrong way to lower the deficit.

The wrong way would be to cut Social Security.

This poll shows that as the 2012 elections grow near, older workers and retirees will be keeping a sharp eye out for where the candidates stand on Social Security.  Candidates need to know that politically savvy seniors here in Virginia will be watching them very closely.

The survey of 603 likely voters was conducted March 6-10, 2011, by the national polling firm of Lake Research Partners; it has a margin of error of +/- 4.0 percent. The poll was paid for by Social Security Works, a national organization that convenes the Strengthen Social Security Campaign, which is comprised of more than 300 national and state organizations representing more than 50 million Americans from many of the nation’s leading aging, labor, disability, women’s, children, consumer, civil rights and equality organizations; the National Committee to Preserve Social Security and Medicare, which has 73,000
members in Virginia; and the Alliance for Retired Americans, which has 50,000 members in Virginia.


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