Opponents of cutting Social Security benefits for retired Americans won't relent in their mission to convince President Obama that Alan Simpson should not lead the president's deficit commission, which may recommend cuts to retirees' benefits.
"There is not a judge in this country that would allow Alan Simpson to serve on a jury if Social Security were on trial," said Edward Coyle, executive director of the Alliance for Retired Americans, in a statement. "Co-chairing a presidential panel is serious business. Much like serving on a jury, it requires a fair, balanced, and honest evaluation of the evidence. By this reasonable yardstick, Alan Simpson has disqualified himself from serving on this commission."
Social Security stands accused of aiding and abetting an unconscionable national budget deficit. The jury is the president's National Commission on Fiscal Responsibility and Reform. Simpson, a former Republican senator from Wyoming, is the co-foreman -- even though he called Social Security "a milk cow with 310 million tits!" last week.
Simpson apologized for the statement and the White House said he would remain co-chairman of the commission despite mounting pressure to ask for his resignation.
"Simpson's remarks were not only deeply hurtful and inaccurate, but they clearly compromise his ability to objectively weigh the arguments presented to the commission during its deliberations,' said Coyle. "His conduct is unbecoming someone trusted with this level of responsibility, and it is time for President Obama to replace him with someone with a greater sense of comportment and impartiality."
Simpson's milk cow remark is the most recent in a series of cranky statements -- he said most of the people anxious about Social Security who write him are "people who live in gated communities and drive their Lexus to the Perkins restaurant to get the AARP discount," for instance.
Social Security's actuaries estimate it can pay out full benefits until 2037.