A majority of both Democrats and Republicans favor expanding the payroll tax that supports Social Security to raise additional money for benefits, according to a survey released Tuesday by Voice of the People, a nonpartisan organization that researches social issues.
Eighty-four percent of registered Republicans and 92 percent of Democrats say they support raising the amount of income on which Social Security taxes are applied to $215,000, the survey says. For next year, the first $127,200 in income will be taxed to provide money to pay Social Security benefits.
Also, 59 percent of the 8,600 registered voters surveyed say they favor eliminating the cap on income completely, which in combination with some other changes would eliminate all future Social Security shortfalls.
In addition to raising the income limit, 81 percent of Republicans and 78 percent of Democrats favor raising the retirement age to 68. Seventy-two percent of Republicans and 80 percent of Democrats support increasing the payroll tax from 6.2 percent to 6.6 percent. Another thing both parties supported was reducing benefits for the top 25 percent of earners. This received support from 72 percent of Republicans and 81 percent of Democrats.
“While Social Security did not come up in the first two presidential debates, moderator Chris Wallace is reportedly preparing to make it a topic in Wednesday’s third and final debate,” says the survey. “In the debates so far, we’ve heard about locker rooms, we’ve heard about emails. What we haven’t heard from the candidates is what they’ll do about Social Security,” says Steven Kull, Voice of the People president.