A Democratic U.S. senator finds himself in strange territory — aligned with a conservative Republican special interest group. U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown introduced legislation — the Shared Retirement Sacrifice Act of 2011 — to tie access of retirement benefits for members of Congress directly to the Social Security retirement age.
“It is time for the members of Congress to walk in the shoes of working Americans,” Brown said Wednesday in a media teleconference. “Members of Congress receive healthy salaries, decent benefits and millions of American families fall far short of that. Members of Congress can access federal retirement benefits early whether they serve as few as five or as many as 25 years, millions of seniors cannot do the same.
“At a time when too many Americans have seen their pensions disappear, seen their 401(k)s plummet, Social Security has become their retirement plan,” the lawmaker from Ohio said. “But it is a plan that can become further out of reach if House Republicans have their way in raising the retirement age. That is a punishment that America’s seniors do not deserve — a punishment inflicted by the draconian House budget bill announced yesterday (Tuesday).”
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