Report by Paula Antolini
March 30, 2017 2:26PM EDT
Sen. Murphy Opposes Efforts Hurting Workers’ Ability to Save for Retirement
Murphy: Republican efforts will “exacerbate the retirement crisis that is enveloping this country.”
Click here or the image above to view video of Murphy speaking about the retirement crisis.
WASHINGTON – Before the U.S. Senate voted to roll back a rule providing retirement savings programs, U.S. Senator Chris Murphy (D-Conn.) lambasted Senate Republicans’ efforts to obstruct the ability of millions of working Americans to save for retirement. Senate Republicans voted on Thursday to overturn an Obama-era Department of Labor rule that currently gives local governments flexibility to establish public-private partnerships and help small business workers save for retirement. Republican leaders continue to support a similar rule that would prevent states, like Connecticut, from offering similar options to workers.
Fifty-five million working Americans do not have access to a workplace retirement plan, and 44 percent of Connecticut’s private sector employees – nearly 600,000 residents – work for an employer that does not offer a retirement plan. Those without sufficient retirement savings risk becoming dependent on social safety programs, such as Social Security and Medicare.
“We have a retirement crisis in this country right now, and this rule was an innovative way to solve it,” said Murphy. “It is hard to understand why we are taking it away, why we are taking this ability away from workers who, frankly, will not have access to easy retirement savings without it. We have known that set-asides in your paycheck work, and this is, frankly, going to exacerbate the retirement crisis that is enveloping this country. Republicans and Democrats should be trying to work together on this question of giving people more access to retirement plans.”
Murphy, along with U.S. Senator Johnny Isakson (R-Ga.), authored bipartisan legislation to help Americans plan for their retirement and ensure they do not outlive their retirement savings. Their bill passed the U.S. Senate Finance Committee last year with unanimous bipartisan support.