Friday November 27th, 2015 5:48PM

Open Congress' retirement to all workers

By The Associated Press
WASHINGTON (AP) -- Younger workers would face higher retirement ages but all Americans could join federal retirement accounts in a plan proposed Tuesday by Sen. Marco Rubio in his latest in a series of national policy prescriptions.

Rubio, a first-term Republican senator from Florida who is weighing a presidential bid, planned a speech Tuesday on how older Americans would fare in retirement. He was proposing an overhaul of federal programs to help younger workers save for their retirement, as well as protect programs for older voters who had assumed those programs would be there after they ended their careers. The Associated Press obtained excerpts from Rubio's speech in advance.

"Partisan politics in America has always been contentious. But throughout our history, on issues of generational importance, our leaders have agreed to put aside politics for the sake of our people," Rubio said in remarks prepared for delivery. "If ever there was an issue worthy of this solidarity, preserving a secure retirement for 21st century seniors is that issue."

Rubio is working to build his policy credentials after a bipartisan immigration plan he helped push through the Senate stalled in the House. Trying to shake that sting and looking ahead to an expected 2016 campaign, Rubio has turned to policy proposals on poverty, higher education and economic growth in recent speeches.

Rubio's retirement prescriptions come just days after he had a private audience with the Republican National Committee in Memphis, Tennessee, and made his first trip to early-nominating New Hampshire as a potential White House contender.

At the same time, Rubio has been bulking up his political team and working to help candidates on the ballots in 2014, including those in Iowa, which hosts the lead-off presidential caucuses.

Rubio's speech promises that his plan would not affect older Americans, who are nervous as they approach retirement. With so many retirees and those near retirement as constituents in senior-rich Florida, Rubio is mindful of their interests as he prepares for the national political stage.

Should he bypass a presidential run, Rubio's policy proposals would not hurt his chances at Senate re-election in 2016.

Rubio is proposing making the federal retirement program that Congress uses available beyond government employees. His proposal would make it easier for workers whose employers don't offer retirement plans, such as 401(k)s and other investment programs. Rubio's systems would make it easier for lower- and middle-class voters to plan for their older years.

"Opening Congress' retirement plan to the American people will allow us to bring the prospect of a secure, comfortable and independent retirement into reach of millions of people," Rubio said.

But Rubio's plan would also increase the retirement age for younger workers - who are expected to live longer - while protecting those aged 55 and over. Older workers could still expect to retire as they had planned.

"The answer is to gradually increase the retirement age for future retirees to account for the rise in life expectancy," Rubio said.

His plan would also suspend the Social Security payroll taxes on those aged 65 or older who continue to work. That move could help him appeal to older workers of all types who choose to stay on the job after they are eligible to receive retirement benefits.

"These seniors have already paid their fair share, and we shouldn't punish them for choosing to keep working rather than immediately cashing in," Rubio said.
© Copyright 2015
All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without permission.
Judge denies motions to move, delay Tsarnaev trial
Lawyers for Boston Marathon bombing suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev asked a federal appeals court Wednesday to overturn a judge's decision to not move his upcoming trial out of state.
10:02PM ( 10 months ago )
High court to adopt electronic filing of cases
The Supreme Court is belatedly developing an electronic filing system similar to those used in courts around the country, Chief Justice John Roberts said Wednesday in his annual end-of-year report.
7:57PM ( 10 months ago )
Storm brings snow, cold to West for New Year's
A blustery winter storm dumped snow and ice across the West on Wednesday, making driving treacherous in the mountains from California to the Rockies and forcing residents and party-goers in some usually sun-soaked cities to bundle up for a frosty New Year's.
5:19PM ( 10 months ago )
U.S. News
State DOT awards $48M contract for NE Ga. road project
The state Department of Transportation has awarded a $47.8 million contract for nine miles of work on a northeast Georgia road.
9:37AM ( 10 months ago )
Business News
Grass fire impacts rush hour traffic on 985
Rush hour traffic on I-985 was slowed by a grass fire Wednesay afternoon with one lane closed while firefighters fought the blaze.
10:19PM ( 10 months ago )
Hall County conviction, sentencing to be reviewed by SCOGA
The State Supreme Court has agreed to hear the appeal of a Hall County man when they reconvene in January.
2:37PM ( 10 months ago )
Maysville man dies from Banks County wreck
The Georgia State Patrol reports that alcohol and/or drugs were factors a single-vehicle wreck that claimed the life of a Maysville man in Banks County Tuesday night.
11:07AM ( 10 months ago )
Local/State News
GOP leader regrets talk to white supremacists; party leaders rally around him
House Republican leaders rallied around one of their own, Whip Steve Scalise, on Tuesday after he said he regrets speaking 12 years ago to a white supremacist organization and condemns the views of such groups.
6:08PM ( 10 months ago )
Conviction of Putin foe sets off protest in Moscow
President Vladimir Putin's chief political foe was convicted along with his brother on Tuesday in a fraud case widely seen as a vendetta by the Kremlin, triggering one of Russia's boldest anti-government demonstrations in years.
6:03PM ( 10 months ago )
More Georgians signing up for health insurance
A federal report says more Georgians have selected health insurance plans through a federally facilitated marketplace.
4:16PM ( 10 months ago )
Police: 4 officers and unknown number of civilians wounded in attack at Planned Parenthood
COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (AP) — A gunman opened fire at a Colorado Planned Parenthood clinic on Friday, authorities said, wounding at least four police officers and an unknown number of civilians.Offic...
5:21PM ( 26 minutes ago )
White House undergoes Thanksgiving Day lockdown after man draped in American flag jumps fence
WASHINGTON (AP) — A man draped in an American flag climbed over the fence at the White House on Thursday, prompting a lockdown as the first family celebrated Thanksgiving.The man was immediately appre...
10:11PM ( 19 hours ago )
Obama grants reprieve to turkeys 'Honest' and 'Abe' during White House ceremony
WASHINGTON (AP) — President Barack Obama spared two turkeys named for one of the nation's most admired presidents, continuing a White House tradition that provides a refreshing sense of amusement and...
9:18PM ( 1 day ago )
The Latest: UN Security Council strongly condemns 'horrifying' attack in Mali, urges probe
BAMAKO, Mali (AP) — The latest on the attack on a hotel in the Malian capital of Bamako. (All times local):___4:55 a.m.The U.N. Security Council is condemning "the horrifying terrorist attack" at the...
10:58PM ( 6 days ago )
World leaders vow vigorous response to Paris terror spree, but little indication of next steps
ANTALYA, Turkey (AP) — World leaders vowed a vigorous response to the Islamic State group's terror spree in Paris as they opened a two-day meeting in Turkey on Sunday, with President Barack Obama call...
2:14PM ( 1 week ago )