Hillary CLinton

Hillary Clinton has been a long-time supporter of social security including Supplemental Security Income, which was added to the system with bipartisan support in 1975 to support people who have disabilities that limit or prevent their participation in the paid labor force. She has pledged not to support cuts in social security. Clinton has also pledged not to increase the retirement age, thereby protecting family members who care for individuals with disabilities — and who, in many cases, incur physical and psychological stressors in the process. She has proposed a system for giving family caregivers credit rather than penalizing them in retirement for having done years of unpaid work.

Donald Trump

Trump was clear in Time to Get Tough (2011) that social security is one of the things he wants to get “tough” on. On page 77, he told readers: “Then there’s the disability racket. Did you know that one out of every twenty people in America now claims disability? That adds up to $170 billion a year in disability checks. Between 2005 and 2009, it is estimated that $25 billion were eaten up in fraudulent Social Security Disability Insurance filings. He goes on to argue falsely that the food stamps program was only meant for emergencies, and to claim that the fact that some families depend on it long-term means “something is clearly wrong, and some of it has to do with fraud.”  Trump also proposes raising the retirement age to at least 70, ignoring family responsibilities that force many people out of the labor market much earlier. Don’t count on Congress to stop any of this: cutting social security has been a Republican priority for years, as has pushing workers in to private, much riskier investments.