The worst fears of progressive groups were confirmed Friday: President Obama's budget will include cuts to Social Security. But the call has gone out, and liberals are fighting back.
The president is proposing a new formula to calculate inflation, called “chained CPI,” effectively reducing annual increases in the payments to most seniors. This would come as part of a compromise on deficit reduction with Republicans that would also include higher taxes on the wealthy and increased spending on some domestic programs such as infrastructure.
But to progressive advocacy groups, compromising upfront on social safety-net programs equals surrender, and they will have none of that. Supporters’ (and reporters’) in-boxes exploded Friday with indignant reactions and suggestions of betrayal. Petitions are circulating. Funds are being raised.
Mr. Obama may have stuck his hand in a hornet’s nest, but having been safely reelected, he may feel he can take the gamble of alienating some of his supporters in the name of trying to reach a deal. But voices on the left disagree.