According to the Associated Press, lobbyists aligned with the Trump administration are pushing for the elimination of the 12.4 percent payroll tax, which is the overwhelming source of revenue for the Social Security trust funds, which provide benefits to the elderly and the disabled. The report published Monday details how they plan to sell the idea to lawmakers and the public:
This approach would give a worker earning $60,000 a year an additional $3,720 in take-home pay, a possible win that lawmakers could highlight back in their districts even though it would involve changing the funding mechanism for Social Security, according to the lobbyist, who asked for anonymity to discuss the proposal without disrupting early negotiations.
“Even if this is just a trial balloon, we want to puncture it as quickly as we can,” said Nancy Altman, the president of the advocacy group Social Security Works. Altman, who told Talking Points Memo that she only found out about this plan from press reports, called it a Trojan Horse.
“They will sell it as a tax cut for the middle class, but really this is undermining middle class economic security, and the ability to retire,” she said. “They’ll say they’re ‘saving’ Social Security, but basically they want to scale back or get rid of the program.”