AARP Nebraska worries that a failure to raise the nation’s debt ceiling could cost Nebraskans dearly.
The numbers tell the story for AARP Nebraska. Failure to raise the debt limit could place in jeopardy monthly Social Security checks going to 309,000 Nebraskans, totaling $330 million a month.
“That’s a very real concern and that would probably be the worst-case scenario is if there’s no change in the debt ceiling,” according to Mark Intermill, Advocacy Director, AARP Nebraska.
Intermill says those checks don’t just go to retirees.
“Young families receive Social Security benefits as well as those who have a disability and those who are retired,” says Intermill.
In fact, according to AARP Nebraska, one in six Nebraska residents receives a Social Security check. Of those, 208,052 are retired and 39,846 are disabled. Checks go to 26,264 widows and widowers, 21,192 children and 13,436 spouses in Nebraska.
Not just Social Security benefits could be cut off if the nation dumps up against the debt ceiling and the federal government cannot meet all its obligations. Unemployment, food stamps, veterans’ benefits, health care and other programs could go unfunded. AARP Nebraska reports the Bipartisan Policy Center also estimates that anywhere from $2 billion to $3 billion in daily Medicare and Medicaid payments across the nation could be in jeopardy.
Intermill doesn’t just worry that Social Security checks could get cut off. He worries that talks to raise the debt ceiling could cut into Social Security benefits. Intermill points out that some of the proposals being floated in Washington would cut Social Security.