Mike Thompson on Social Security
Democratic Representative (CA-1)
Voted YES on raising 401(k) limits & making pension plans more portable.
Comprehensive Retirement Security and Pension Reform Act of 2001: Vote to pass a bill that would raise the amount individuals may contribute to traditional and Roth Individual Retirement Accounts and to 401[k] plans and make pensions plans more portable
Reference: Bill sponsored by Portman, R-OH;
Bill HR 10
; vote number 2001-96
on May 2, 2001
Voted NO on reducing tax payments on Social Security benefits.
Vote to pass a bill that would reduce the percentage of Social Security benefits that is taxable from 85 to 50 percent for single taxpayers with incomes over $25,000 and married couples with incomes over $32,000. The revenues that would be lost for the Medicare trust fund would be replaced by money from the general fund.
Reference: Bill sponsored by Archer, R-TX;
Bill HR 4865
; vote number 2000-450
on Jul 27, 2000
Voted YES on strengthening the Social Security Lockbox.
Amending the Social Security Lockbox bill to require that any budget surplus cannot be spent until the solvency of Social Security and Medicare is guaranteed.
Reference: Motion to Recommit introduced by Rangel, D-NY;
Bill HR 1259
; vote number 1999-163
on May 26, 1999
Strengthen Trust Funds and take them off-budget.
Thompson signed the Blue Dog Coalition letter:
Blue Dog budget framework
Source: Blue Dog Coalition letter to the Senate 01-BDC5 on May 9, 2001
- Take the Social Security and Medicare trust fund surpluses off-budget and require that the trust fund surpluses be saved for Social Security and Medicare
- Reserve half of the on-budget surplus over the next five years -- $370 billion -- for debt reduction and strengthening Social Security and Medicare
- Allocate one-quarter of the on-budget surplus over the next five years for investments in priorities identified by the President and supported by both parties in Congress, including defense, Medicare prescription drugs, education, agriculture, low-income programs and veterans.
- Devote one-quarter of the on-budget surplus to tax cuts retroactive to 2001, for a net tax cut of $180 billion from 2001-2006.
Reject proposals for private saving accounts.
Thompson co-sponsored rejecting proposals for private saving accounts
To reject proposals to partially or completely substitute private saving accounts for the lifelong, guaranteed, inflation-protected insurance benefits provided through Social Security. The Congress finds the following:
- President Bush promised to partially privatize Social Security, and appointed a commission to develop a plan on his behalf.
- The commission developed three alternative plans that would partially privatize Social Security.
- The plans divert substantial monies from the Social Security Trust Funds to pay for the private accounts, which threatens benefits for current beneficiaries by significantly weakening the financial condition of the Trust Funds.
- The plans' cuts in disability and survivor benefits directly contradict the President's promise that disability and survivor benefits would be preserved under privatization.
- Furthermore, these reductions in guaranteed benefits apply to all workers,
regardless of whether they chose to have an individual account or not.
- Substituting private accounts for guaranteed Social Security benefits increases financial risk for retirees, disabled workers and their families.
- Moreover, other proposals to privatize Social Security, such as the 'Social Security Guarantee Plus' plan or the 'Social Security Ownership and Guarantee' plan, establish private accounts that directly or indirectly reduce Social Security benefits.
Source: H.R.4780 02-H4780 on May 21, 2002
- The Congress hereby commits to preserve the guaranteed, lifelong, inflation-protected benefits provided under the Social Security Act to retirees, disabled workers and their families, and the survivors of deceased workers; and
- Congress therefore rejects the President's plans to partially privatize Social Security, and other proposals to privatize Social Security by establishing private accounts that would undermine traditional Social Security benefits.
Rated 60% by the ARA, indicating a mixed record on senior issues.
Thompson scores 60% by the ARA on senior issues
The mission of the Alliance for Retired Americans is to ensure social and economic justice and full civil rights for all citizens so that they may enjoy lives of dignity, personal and family fulfillment and security. The Alliance believes that all older and retired persons have a responsibility to strive to create a society that incorporates these goals and rights and that retirement provides them with opportunities to pursue new and expanded activities with their unions, civic organizations and their communities.
The following ratings are based on the votes the organization considered most important; the numbers reflect the percentage of time the representative voted the organization's preferred position.
Source: ARA website 03n-ARA on Dec 31, 2003
No severe changes; no privatization.
Thompson signed H.RES.1077
RESOLUTION Expressing the sense of the House of Representatives against severe changes to Social Security.
Source: Resolution Against Severe Changes 10-HR1077 on Feb 5, 2010
- Whereas Social Security's essential protections for workers and their families cannot be matched by private savings, which are a complement to, but not a substitute for, Social Security's guaranteed benefits;
- Whereas, as one such protection, Social Security provides a guaranteed benefit that one can never outlive, and unlike private savings or investments, is not subject to the ups and downs of the stock market;
- Whereas, for 75 years, Social Security has never been a day late or a dollar short;
- Whereas the American people made clear in 2005 that they did not seek severe change in Social Security when they resoundingly rejected President Bush's attempt to privatize Social Security;
- Whereas the current minority party plan for Social Security is even more extreme than the plan they advanced in 2005:
- it cuts guaranteed retirement and survivor benefits
for all workers, whether or not they wish to have a private account;
- it diverts trillions from the Trust Fund into private accounts;
- it increases Federal borrowing by $4,100,000,000,000; and
- it subjects workers' basic retirement security to market volatility and the risk of losses; and
- Whereas privatizing Social Security means benefit cuts, diversion of Trust Fund resources, subjecting individuals to market risk and losses, and increasing Federal borrowing by trillions of dollars:
- Now, therefore, be it Resolved, That the Congress should stand with the American people to reject severe changes to Social Security, including any and all attempts to privatize Social Security, and instead should commit to work bipartisanly to make common-sense adjustments to Social Security to strengthen it for future generations while preserving its guarantees of secure income and family protection in the event of a worker's death, retirement, or severe disability.
Rated 92% by ARA, indicating a pro-Trust Fund stance.
Thompson scores 92% Alliance for Retired Americans
Scoring system for 2014: Ranges from 0% (supports privatization and other market-based reforms) to 100% (supports keeping federal control over Trust Fund and Social Security system).
About ARA (from their website, www.RetiredAmericans.org):
The Alliance for Retired Americans is a nationwide organization, founded in May 2001, with now over 4.2 million members working together to make their voices heard in the laws, policies, politics, and institutions that shape our lives. The mission of the Alliance for Retired Americans is to ensure social and economic justice and full civil rights for all citizens so that they may enjoy lives of dignity, personal and family fulfillment and security.
Source: ARA lifetime rating on incumbents of 113th Congress 14_ARA on Jan 1, 2013
- Alliance members visit the polls in record numbers. We use the power of our membership and our Congressional Voting Record to educate and mobilize seniors to elect leaders committed to improving the lives of retirees and older Americans.
We are effectively warding off cuts to our most important social programs like Social Security and Medicare. Our Human Chain Against the Chained CPI events in the summer of 2013 took place in more than 50 cities and mobilized support for stopping this cut to earned Social Security benefits.
- We blocked the privatization of Social Security with our Social Security "Truth Truck" delivering 2.1 million petitions to Members of Congress and other tactics.
- The Alliance makes its voice heard on the issues that matter not just to current retirees, but to all Americans who hope to retire one day. We were a leading voice in recent debates considering changes to Medicare, like replacing guaranteed benefits with a voucher system, and remain so in 2014.
Page last updated: Jun 07, 2020