The Republican-controlled House of Representatives on Tuesday plans to pass legislation that would require Social Security trustees to submit biometric information to the Social Security Administration when they apply for benefits, even if it’s not the identity of the beneficiary.
The House’s bill, which would require trustees to provide the biometric data when applying for benefits for the first time, is likely to be the first piece of legislation from the GOP to address the fraud issue that’s been simmering for months in Washington.
“This bill is a first step in addressing the issue of fraud that’s plaguing the American people and is making it difficult for individuals to receive Social Security benefits,” Rep. Dan Kildee (D-Mich.) told The Associated Press.
Republican leaders of the House Ways and Means Committee and Ways and Underminer John Yarmuth (D) also plan to introduce legislation next week that would establish an independent panel to examine fraud claims.
There’s little question that a bipartisan group of lawmakers are seeking to address concerns that Social Security is a financial boondoggle that is designed to benefit the rich at the expense of everyone else.
While Democrats have long supported the program, Republicans have resisted efforts to rein in its generosity.
In 2016, Congress passed a law that capped benefits at $113,600 for a single person and $118,600 in 2017 and 2018.
The House passed its own bill last year that included a cap of $114,000, but the measure was vetoed by President Donald Trump.
Since then, the Trump administration has pushed to cut benefits for seniors, cut benefits to those with chronic illnesses and to increase premiums for those making less than $200,000.
This bill would be a big step toward preventing fraud and ensuring that Social Services is administered in a fair and transparent manner.
And, of course, it’s a significant step toward getting the American public more familiar with Social Security’s benefits and how they are administered.
A bipartisan group representing a wide range of interests and the American Social Workers Association released a report earlier this year showing that a majority of Americans are familiar with the program and understand how it works.
President Donald Trump is expected to sign the bill into law next week.