July 1, 1998


In this new time of opportunity, there is no more sacred obligation than to care for our parents, and help them live every day to its fullest. That is why saving Social Security is about more than our budgets, it is about our deepest values.

- Vice President Al Gore
July 1, 1998

Today, Vice President Al Gore travels to Rhode Island to attend a non-partisan, national forum on Social Security, co-sponsored by the Concord Coalition and the American Association of Retired Persons. Joining the Vice President at the forum are Senators Chafee (R-RI) and Reed (D-RI), and Representatives Rangel (D-NY) and Sanford (R-SC).

The Most Successful Government Program Ever. Since its inception in 1935, the Social Security system has provided security for the retired and disabled, as well as their families. The Social Security system currently provides benefits to about 44 million Americans, and keeps roughly 15 million of them out of poverty. Social Security is the sole source of income for 18 percent of all elderly Americans, and the primary source for two-thirds of all senior citizens.

The Long-Term Challenge. Today, just over three workers contribute for every Social Security beneficiary. With ever increasing numbers of individuals reaching retirement age, it is estimated that by 2030, two workers will contribute into Social Security for each recipient.

The Clinton/Gore Administration Is Working To Protect Social Security. At today's event, the Vice President will reaffirm the Administration's commitment to strengthening the Social Security system through sound principles that meet five objectives:

A Nationwide Dialogue On Social Security Reform. Today's forum is part of a year long dialogue the President called for on the subject of Social Security reform. The results of these conversations will culminate in a White House Conference at the end of this year, followed by negotiations with Congress on a bipartisan strategy on how best to achieve Social Security reform and guarantee its solvency for years to come.

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