Gore Plan No Substitute For Social Security Reform -- Online Calculator Personalizes The Problems

DALLAS (June 20, 2000) - Vice President Al Gore's proposal to set up private accounts completely independent from Social Security is not a legitimate substitute for comprehensive Social Security reform. So states John C. Goodman, president of the National Center for Policy Analysis (NCPA SM) and an expert on Social Security.

"The Gore plan does nothing to save Social Security," said Goodman. "It does not increase the rate of return workers can receive on their payroll tax dollars, nor does it avert the need to cut benefits or raise taxes in the future."

To help people understand the problems Social Security faces, the NCPA is maintaining an online Social Security calculator (www.mysocialsecurity.org) that shows:

  • What you are likely to pay in Social Security taxes.
  • How much you are likely to receive in benefits.
  • What you could have received if those taxes had been conservatively invested in a private account.
  • What rate of return you can expect from the current system.
  • What the payroll tax rate will have to be at the time of your retirement to pay for Social Security, Medicare and other elderly benefits.

The calculator, for the first time anywhere, uses census data from nearly 500 occupations to help project the user's future income growth, providing the most accurate benefit projection available, including projections made by the Social Security Administration.

"Encouraging Americans to save and invest is a good thing," added Goodman. "But Gore's plan could have the perverse effect of making needed Social Security reforms more difficult."