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Two tweets, which seem to me worth their own diary:

Chuck Todd ‏@chucktodd

Will this cause GOPers to balk? @mmurraypolitics: Pelosi tells @mitchellreports she could support the latest Obama WH fiscal-cliff proposal

And another:
Mark Murray ‏@mmurraypolitics

Pelosi says her red line in the negotiations is raising Medicare's eligibility age -- not chained CPI

I would find it surprising in light of these statements if Boehner and Obama were not very close to a deal.

And if I were a Democrat in the House, I would think VERY VERY hard about giving GOP Congressman cover on tax increases for the rich while going on record cutting social security.  In fact, a Democrat in a marginal district would be crazy to vote for it.

In general the whole thing makes me want to vomit.

The New York Times reports Boehner is moving forward with Plan B and that he has rejected the deal that included the SS cuts.  But there is this, and I think this is why a deal is nearly done:

The speaker made it clear he would continue negotiating with the president, and some House Republicans emerged from a closed-door meeting with Mr. Boehner confident that a deal was now in reach.
http://www.nytimes.com/...

From the comments:

Pelosi pushed back on progressive opponents of one compromise measure that would modify the way cost-of-living increases are calculated to determine Society Security payments. While some in the Democratic Party say that the change -- called "chained CPI" --  would effectively cut Social Security payments, the minority leader said Tuesday that the effects on poor recipients would be minimal once all of the specifics of the deal are worked out.

"The details of this are not all ironed out, but they all mitigate for helping the poorest and neediest in our society, whether they are [Supplemental Security Income] recipients, whether they're 80 and older, or whether they're truly needy," she said.

This is a done deal.  My guess is this evolves to something like what was proposed in Simpson Bowles.  Simpson Bowles limited COLA's, but only to those in the top 50% or recipients.  Below that amount the benefits were not as effected.

Simpson Bowles also had a minimum Social Security benefit - which I doubt we will see.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Tip Jar (29+ / 0-)

    The bitter truth of deep inequality has been disguised by an era of cheap imported goods and the anyone-can-make-it celebrity myth - Polly Toynbee

    by fladem on Tue Dec 18, 2012 at 11:49:36 AM PST

  •  I don't trust the media. Pelosi: (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    bear83, Alan Arizona, Sylv
    Pelosi Statement on Republicans’ ‘Plan B’ Tax Proposal

    Washington, D.C. – Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi released the following statement today after Speaker John Boehner put forward his so-called “Plan B” proposal to raise tax rates only on Americans making more than $1 million per year:

    “By conceding that they are willing to raise tax rates, the Republican leadership has delivered a victory to President Obama. Republicans have now yielded on the point of rates. So why won’t they work with Democrats on tax rates as part of a responsible, balanced agreement to create jobs, spur the economy, strengthen the middle class, and reduce the deficit?

    “Earlier this year, I put forward a plan to smoke out the Republicans’ true position: a proposal to raise taxes on those making over $1 million per year in context of a big, bold, and balanced plan. Republicans said ‘no’ six months ago; the President took his case to the American people to use $250,000 as a threshold for higher tax rates, and the public supported him.

    “With the fiscal cliff just two weeks away, Republicans’ so-called ‘Plan B’ is nothing more than a cynical ploy that is harmful to the middle class and the economy. It is not big enough or balanced enough to comprise a sufficient down payment to reduce the deficit and promote growth, while instilling confidence in consumers and the markets, lifting the sequester, and preventing another Republican-led downgrade of our nation’s credit rating.

    “By putting forward this plan, Speaker Boehner is indicating that he has 218 Republican votes to raise rates. Democrats are united in opposing this gimmick.”

    http://www.democraticleader.gov/...

  •  Pelosi Will Never Get Another Penney From Me (8+ / 0-)

    Any democrat in the house or senate that votes to cut social security is never going to get my vote ever.

    "Don't Let Them Catch You With Your Eyes Closed"

    by rssrai on Tue Dec 18, 2012 at 11:54:21 AM PST

  •  I must admit (0+ / 0-)

    I am surprised by your opposition.

    •  Then you (0+ / 0-)

      really know nothing about me.

      Which isn't a surprise.

      The bitter truth of deep inequality has been disguised by an era of cheap imported goods and the anyone-can-make-it celebrity myth - Polly Toynbee

      by fladem on Tue Dec 18, 2012 at 12:00:32 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  No need to be hostile (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        madmojo, virginislandsguy, gramofsam1

        I admit I know nothing more of you than what you have written but I think you can recall your very vehement comments about how disatrous going over the fiscal cliff would be. (Maybe i am misremembering?)

        This response does tell me a little bit more about you though.

      •  I'm with Armando. (0+ / 0-)

        I was surprised, too. I thought you'd be cautiously optimistic. I don't know why. Just the mind-space I've pigeonholed you in.

        But seeing that it makes you want to vomit makes me nervous.

        "Gussie, a glutton for punishment, stared at himself in the mirror."

        by GussieFN on Tue Dec 18, 2012 at 12:38:22 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  I tend to agree with Pelosi. If I understand the (6+ / 0-)

    effect of a chained CRI it would be about one dollar a month initially. While having some effect in time preserving medicare at 65 helps all (including the poor) more. And if Obama also gets unemployment extension and a meaningful stimulus, and some relief from GOP debt limit hostage taking overall he got the better of Boner (as he should after winning the election).

    "A young man who wishes to remain a sound Atheist cannot be too careful of his reading. There are traps everywhere ". C. S. Lewis

    by TofG on Tue Dec 18, 2012 at 11:56:39 AM PST

  •  I am 75 years old and drawing Social Security (14+ / 0-)

    while still working full time.

    I thought I might be able to actually retire when I turn 76 next year but I guess not.

    FDR must be spinning in his grave.

    I thought it was bad when they started taxing benefits years ago even though the benefits had been paid for by taxes we alread had paid but I guess these guys all think alike.

    You can only take so many Jets away from the rich and then you have to even the score by beating up what is left of the middle class.

    Once a President no longer has to run for re-election you get to see his true colors.

    What a country.

  •  Pelosi... "effects on the poor w/b minimal" (10+ / 0-)

    according to NBC News First Read

    Pelosi pushed back on progressive opponents of one compromise measure that would modify the way cost-of-living increases are calculated to determine Society Security payments. While some in the Democratic Party say that the change -- called "chained CPI" --  would effectively cut Social Security payments, the minority leader said Tuesday that the effects on poor recipients would be minimal once all of the specifics of the deal are worked out.

    "The details of this are not all ironed out, but they all mitigate for helping the poorest and neediest in our society, whether they are [Supplemental Security Income] recipients, whether they're 80 and older, or whether they're truly needy," she said.

    But, she added, she would join some of those progressive Democrats in opposing an increase in the Medicare eligibility age.

    Get out there and get peace, think peace, live peace, and breathe peace, and you'll get it as soon as you like.” ~ John Lennon

    by Lady Libertine on Tue Dec 18, 2012 at 11:59:30 AM PST

    •  That would make it better I guess. (11+ / 0-)

      I still don't really like it.  Yes, it's better than a medicare age raise.  

      Join us on the Black Kos front porch to review news and views written from a black pov—everyone is welcome.

      by TomP on Tue Dec 18, 2012 at 12:01:50 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  its also better than (9+ / 0-)

        a shard glass sandwich but its still unacceptable. Their headline is "As some progressives push back, Pelosi embraces Obama cliff offer". Theres video at the link but I dont have time to find it in there just now, its toward the end I guess.

        Get out there and get peace, think peace, live peace, and breathe peace, and you'll get it as soon as you like.” ~ John Lennon

        by Lady Libertine on Tue Dec 18, 2012 at 12:06:00 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  She talks about it and said (7+ / 0-)

          she could support the WH's offer, but is seems to me that this was leading and not much of a definitive declaration of support.

          Durbin and other Democrats have come out against it.

          Dick Durbin: No cut in Social Security benefits

          Posted by Greg Sargent

          This may cheer liberals who are worried that the White House is giving too much ground to Republicans by proposing “Chained CPI” for Social Security as part of a final fiscal cliff deal — in effect agreeing to a cut in Social Security benefits.

          In an interview with me this morning, Senator Dick Durbin, a top ally of the White House, told me he opposes including Chained CPI in the final deal unless it completely exempts Social Security. He said it would be difficult for Democrats to support Chained CPI for Social Security if it ended up in a final deal, though he said it was premature to say anything definitive about how they would vote.

          “We ought to deal with Social Security in a separate conversation that is not part of deficit reduction,” Durbin told me. “To do it at this stage is the wrong way to go.”

          Durbin has said this before, but it’s notable that he’s repeating it in the wake of the White House’s reported offer of a deal that includes Chained CPI for Social Security.

          <...>

          http://www.washingtonpost.com/...

          Why is this even being discussed? Social Security is not a deficit driver.
      •  Oh, they'll be back for that (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        HoundDog, penguins4peace

        This is no thoughtful long term fix.  This is just using seniors as hostages to make a short term expedient deal.  They will need to make other short term expedient deals.

      •  Once you subscribe to the notion that somebody is (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Eddie L, shanikka

        going to take the hit, the way women did to get ACA passed per Stupak, it's only a matter of time before everyone takes the hit. This kind of crap as to the Chained CPI goes against what everyone knows about inflation, and has to be stopped now, not when the seniors start starving or being evicted, or stop buying medicine and  .  . .  .

    •  I don't believe her (4+ / 0-)

      Do you?

    •  Poorest and Neediest Only - another trick (6+ / 0-)

      So we can expect that to be poverty level or thereabouts. Or wow, maybe up to $30K or $40K at best. MEANWHILE, those making $400,000 pay not one more cent in taxes.  

      This is the MIDDLE CLASS SOCIAL SECURITY BENEFITS CUTS bill.  It strikes right at those who were the working or just above working poor. Those with inadequate pensions.  Those with a few thousand in savings.  Those who have enough to get by for a few years.  Those who will already be stretching every dollar precisely because they know they do not have hundreds of thousands in savings to last for 30 years.  They may have adequate assets on paper for today but those assets are insufficient for their future needs.

    •  Seems to Me (0+ / 0-)

      That if "all the details are not all ironed out" then Pelosi's got absolutely zero ability to say we have a deal that guarantees it will indeed protect low income seniors.  All she can say is that they have a deal that might get around to worrying about this issue after they all finish their photo-ops celebrating our failure to "go over the fiscal cliff."

      In other words, the usual disingenous political bullshit.

      The really depressing thing is that I wish I could say I was colored surprised.  I'm not.  I am however, sick at heart because I know that this "deal" will go through with no real protections as a precondition to any deal (which is the only way Republicans are going to agree to it, given the negotiating postures they have taken the past four years) and then folks will still be making excuses about how politically this is not-so-bad and that we shouldn't blame the Administration or Democrats in Congress for their role in making it happen.  Set aside that the very idea of "chained CPI" is offensive IMO to begin with (after all, we are not talking about funds generated by the dole where we even arguably--and I argue even that-- have a right to be telling folks what they"should" be able to live on when they are retired and what goods and services they "should" be buying.  The real issue is that the offensiveness continues with the lies that pretend that some of us have not been watching politics and politicians for decades and therefore realize that the kiss of death to any idea upsetting to one's political opponent is to put things off while giving them the bottom line that they want.

      /sigh

      /sigh

    •  When you're living from hand to mouth like (0+ / 0-)

      so many do in the u.s. even a minimal change can do real damage.

      "I smoke. If this bothers anyone, I suggest you look around at the world in which we live and shut your fuckin' mouth." --- Bill Hicks

      by voroki on Tue Dec 18, 2012 at 02:33:19 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Who is "poor" to millionaire Pelosi? (0+ / 0-)

      I doubt it's me.  And I'm gonna need every cent of SS just to pay for health care.  

      What a great Christmas present the Party is giving Americans this year.  Especially soon to be retiring baby boomers who voted for this President.

  •  Boehner Also Wanted To End Unemployment Benefits (4+ / 0-)

    that expire right after Christmas.  How would millions of unemployed families like to be faced with that right after a rather strained Christmas for them & their families?  The President said no & held firm.

    Boehner also wanted to extend the eligibility age to 67 for Medicare.  That is much more of a life & death issue than a chained CPI in MHO.

    I'm on both SS & Medicare.  I was thrilled when I started receiving Medicare & all it's benefits at 65.  If it had been extended to age 67, I would only have been eligible 3 months ago.

    I'll take the chained CPI.  

    •  snapples - Don't get tricked into choosing. (0+ / 0-)

      This is freaking unacceptable.

      •  Good Thought.... (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        gramofsam1, USHomeopath

        but I expected some compromise.  Last lame duck, everyone was up in arms about Obama's negotiating skills.

        When the dust cleared, he & we didn't fare badly.  Realistically, Republicans are fiscal nightmares, incompetent boobs & right wing fringe kooks.  In order for anything to pass their vile House these days, Boehner must have some smelly red meat to throw to his Tea Bagging hound dogs.  

        That's our reality....until we can throw their mangy hides out of office in 2014.  Rick Snyder's approval just dropped 28 points after he instituted Right to Work.  He's at 38% right now w/ 4 Democratic challengers ready & willing to go after his hide & run it out of office.

  •  not new by the way (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    fladem, Lady Libertine, blueoasis

    "Small Businesses Don't Build Levees" - Melissa Harris Perry

    by justmy2 on Tue Dec 18, 2012 at 12:04:11 PM PST

  •  i think that the deal is probably the best choice (0+ / 0-)


    however, Boehner has rejected the deal.

    "Kossacks are held to a higher standard. Like Hebrew National hot dogs." - blueaardvark

    by louisev on Tue Dec 18, 2012 at 12:11:44 PM PST

  •  If the Pres wants this deal (6+ / 0-)

    he should have to do it with Republican votes.  Called my rep and Senators to tell them to oppose this deal if this is what the deal turns out to be.

    Glad the Pres won and all that, but this is where I cash in my chips.  

    “Th’ noise ye hear is not th’ first gun iv a revolution. It’s on’y th’ people iv the United States batin’ a carpet.” - Mr. Dooley

    by puakev on Tue Dec 18, 2012 at 12:13:05 PM PST

  •  Boehner rejected the deal- Gone to "Plan B" (0+ / 0-)
    •  According to the Times (0+ / 0-)

      report, I think there is less there than meets the eye.

      The bitter truth of deep inequality has been disguised by an era of cheap imported goods and the anyone-can-make-it celebrity myth - Polly Toynbee

      by fladem on Tue Dec 18, 2012 at 12:30:36 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  The bet being made is chained CPI is too wonkish (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    fladem, The Hamlet, penguins4peace

    too in the weeds for folks to really get fired up over.  

    Of course GOP will frame it as "Democratic President cut Social Security" and have a much better media operation to win that frame.  

    This will be the first 2016 test for potential candidates - Who is the first Dem to very publicly balk at the idea of any cut to SS?

    The NRA is the Gun Manufacturer Lobby. Nothing more. Their pontification about the second amendment is nothing more than their ad jingle. They're the domestic version of the Military Industrial Complex.

    by Jacoby Jonze on Tue Dec 18, 2012 at 12:27:18 PM PST

  •  Stop separating out "the poor" from everyone else (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    penguins4peace, Eddie L

    This is political lunacy. So the rich will get less in benefits but they'll make up for it with more juicy tax breaks--the middle class will get less in SS benefits with a few tax cut crumbs-- and the poor will be "protected". Protected my ass! Do this and it will be easier for the GOP to label SS as a welfare program instead of social insurance.  

  •  I left the local Dem executive committee when (0+ / 0-)

    Pelosi supported amnesty for the telecoms on illegal spying on Americans and supported the Military Commissions bill, which eliminated habeas corpus for "terror suspects."
      I've stopped donating to Democrats because I don't trust them. The chained CPI deal is the final straw for me. I'll vote 3rd Party if that goes through.
      If the Democratic Party can't get to the left of Reagan on Social Security, what good is it?

  •  Where has Pelosi been - "The Neediest?" (0+ / 0-)

    Our esteemed ex-Speaker (who accomplished a hell of a lot in four years of constant crisis) is way off base if she thinks that preserving normal SS increases only for people on SSI or some types of disability will make any difference.

    Unfortunately, the SSI recipients aren't the only ones likely to be "truly needy," in our Nancy's words.  

    Pelosi needs to remember that only 40-50% of her Baby Boomer constituents have ANYTHING saved for retirement, according to surveys.  The majority of Boomers are way behind where they should be, and way behind the smaller "sandwich generation" that is just ahead of them in age.

    We shouldn't kid ourselves, and Pelosi shouldn't kid us. The BB will be desperate for income in retirement, and the economy will be as dependent as ever on the spending power of its biggest generation for years to come.

    The point is to keep SS benefits as high as possible for as many as possible.  Giving in on ANY CHANGES to SS as part of negotiations to resolve this fake emergency will mean utter betrayal, not just of the poorest, but of millions of Boomers, who will be poorer in retirement  than they ever thought possible.  Wonder who they'll blame?

  •  Can we take a moment... (0+ / 0-)

    ...to remember that Social Security does not add to the deficit? Pelosi, Obama, et al: why are you fucking around with Social Security in a supposed deficit deal?

  •  Assuming this cut is worth about .03% a year (0+ / 0-)

    which seems to be the number discussed (though it can vary from year to year and if the base CPI is adjusted again as it has been in the past the picture may be again different) we are talking about a roughly 10% impact over 30 years. For someone getting the median $15000 Soc Sec payment that's $1500, which is arguably quite significant.

    Let's use real scenarios, makes it much easier to grasp what this means for people.

    We don't inherit the world from the past. We borrow it from the future.

    by minorityusa on Tue Dec 18, 2012 at 02:29:59 PM PST

    •  Check your math (0+ / 0-)

      .03% (as opposed to .03), three hundredths of 1 percent, over 30 years comes to about 1%, without compounding.

      .03% increase means 1.0003^30. 1.0003^30=1.009039.

      Okay it's about 1% WITH compounding.

      That doesn't mean I support this move. I'm not inclined to support ANYTHING that would reduce the value of Social Security benefits. And if that's the real effect of changing the formula, I for one question the point of making such a change; it won't have any substantial impact on cash flow at the national level. I suspect the extent of the change is being significantly understated.

      It's simply not right. I have nothing at stake here; I will never collect a penny in Social Security myself. My situation is atypical however and I believe that the best thing to do is anything that will NOT make things worse for MOST people.

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