Skip to comments.Social Security Agreement With Mexico Released After 3 1/2 Year Freedom of Information Act Battle
Posted on 01/01/2007 8:04:50 AM PST by WatchingInAmazement
WASHINGTON, Dec. 29 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- After numerous refusals over three and a half years, the Social Security Administration (SSA) has released the first known public copy of the U.S.-Mexico Social Security Totalization Agreement. The government was forced to make the disclosure in response to lawsuits filed under the Freedom of Information Act by TREA Senior Citizens League, a 1.2 million-member nonpartisan seniors advocacy group.
The Totalization Agreement could allow millions of illegal Mexican workers to draw billions of dollars from the U.S. Social Security Trust Fund.
The agreement between the U.S. and Mexico was signed in June 2004, and is awaiting President Bush's signature. Once President Bush approves the agreement, which would be done without Congressional vote, either House of Congress would have 60 days to disapprove the agreement by voting to reject it.
"The Social Security Administration itself warns that Social Security is within decades of bankruptcy -- yet, they seem to have no problem making agreements that hasten its demise," said Ralph McCutchen, Chairman of the TREA Senior Citizens League.
The U.S. currently has 21 similar agreements in effect with other nations, which are intended to eliminate dual taxation for persons who work outside their country of origin. All of the agreements are with developed nations with economies similar to that of the U.S.
For example, a worker who turns 62 after 1990 generally needs 40 calendar quarters of coverage to receive retirement benefits. Under totalization agreements, workers are allowed to combine earnings from both countries in order to qualify for benefits. The Agreement with Mexico, like other totalization agreements, would allow workers to qualify with just six quarters, or 18 months, of U.S. coverage.
But Mexico's retirement system is radically different than that of other participating countries. For example, only 40 percent of non-government workers participate in Mexico's system, whereas 96 percent of America's non- government workers do. In addition, the U.S. system is progressive, meaning lower wage earners get back much more than they put in; in Mexico, workers get back only what they put in, plus accrued interest.
"I applaud the persistent efforts of TREA Senior Citizens League to try to get documents from the U.S. Government about the U.S.-Mexico Social Security Totalization Agreement," said Rep. Walter Jones (news, bio, voting record) (R-N.C.). "The American people are finally beginning to get some of the information regarding this Agreement that they have been seeking for so long."
According to the SSA, the Social Security Trust Fund will begin paying out more than it is taking in by 2017, and will be exhausted by the year 2040.
With 1.2 million members, TREA Senior Citizens League is one of the nation's largest nonpartisan seniors groups. Visit http://www.SeniorsLeague.org for more information or to see the Totalization Agreement documents.
SOURCE TREA Senior Citizens League
What's important here is not so much the nuts and bolts of this agreement, but the secrecy with which is has been kept from public review.
Obviously this country must have a death wish. I'm speechless.
I had really hoped these rumors were untrue. This is just beyond the pale. I need to quit typing now before I type something that will get me banned for life.
Both the agreement itself and the attempt to maintain secrecy are shocking and a betrayal of the citizens of the US.
Once again, Mexican policies are what our policies SHOULD be.
They vigorously go after illegal immigrants and defend their borders. We do not. They operate their pension system like a 401k. We operate ours as a welfare program.
Seems like they have it figured out better than we have.
Amazing how 'selective' the MSM can be when it comes to what it wants to cover as the 'news', now isn't it?
Bernard Goldberg was 100% correct about their 'Bias'!
Before the American people force a representative government upon Iraq, we might want to consider restoring it in the United States, first.
"The Totalization Agreement could allow millions of illegal Mexican workers to draw billions of dollars from the U.S. Social Security Trust Fund."
There is no SS "Trust Fund". In Ponzi scheme fashion, current retirees get their payments from those currently working and paying taxes. What is worse, some of the social security tax money is used for general purposes not even related to "Socialist Security".
If anyone thinks there is a "trust fund" I suggest contacting the SSA and ask for the current balance of 'your' retirement account. Hear the bureaucrats laughing?
He hasn't signed anything...yet. But it is curious that it passed in 2004 yet is still awaiting his signature. One wonders if this will be part of the usual last minute slew of executive actions before a President leaves office. I hope not.
It never ends. Time for our Caesar?
Would Bush actually sign this???
Every day I get a new disappointment.
Where are conservatives to go? Certainly not to the Republican Party.
Please thank these congressmen for at least trying to stall this agreement.
H. CON. RES. 50
Expressing disapproval by the Congress of the totalization agreement between the United States and Mexico signed by the Commissioner of Social Security and the Director General of the Mexican Social Security Institute on June 29, 2004.
IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
February 9, 2005
Mr. GOODE (for himself, Mr. JONES of North Carolina, Mr. PAUL, Mr. SESSIONS, Mrs. JO ANN DAVIS of Virginia, Mr. NORWOOD, Mr. ROHRABACHER, Mr. ROYCE, Mr. TANCREDO, Mr. GINGREY, Mr. BARTLETT of Maryland, Mr. MANZULLO, Mr. HAYWORTH, Mr. OTTER, Mr. DUNCAN, Mr. ISSA, Mr. SULLIVAN, Mr. SAM JOHNSON of Texas, Mr. DOOLITTLE, Mr. CULBERSON, Mr. BARRETT of South Carolina, Mr. BRADLEY of New Hampshire, Mr. HOSTETTLER, Mr. WELDON of Florida, Mr. GARY G. MILLER of California, and Mrs. MYRICK) submitted the following concurrent resolution; which was referred to the Committee on Ways and Means
(link may be temporary.
I also wondered if he might wait until the last minute. However, either House could still take action, according to the article.