October 26, 2017

Cardin, Stabenow, Brown, Wyden, Casey Call on Republican Leaders to Protect Retirement Savings Accounts in Tax Plan

WASHINGTON – Following recent reports that congressional Republicans are considering cuts to 401(k)s and other retirement plans in their upcoming tax bill, U.S. Senators Ben Cardin (D-MD), Debbie Stabenow (D-MI), Sherrod Brown (D-OH), Ron Wyden (D-OR) and Bob Casey (D-PA) called on Republican leaders not to reduce or eliminate incentives for retirement savings. In their letter, the Senators expressed their strong support for President Trump’s recent commitment to protect retirement savings plans.   

“We are alarmed by reports that you continue to consider “Rothification” or severely limiting how much Americans can contribute to their retirement accounts,” the lawmakers wrote in a letter to Republican leaders. “Reducing the opportunities that millions of Americans have to save for their retirement and secure their standard of living in old age will only serve to put their future financial security more at risk.  Consistent with President Trump’s commitment, we urge you not to include any proposals in forthcoming legislation that would eliminate or curtail retirement savings incentives.”

The signed copy of the letter may be found below. 

October 26, 2017

 

The Honorable Steven T. Mnuchin                     Mr. Gary D. Cohn

Secretary of the Treasury                                        Chief Economic Advisor

U.S. Department of the Treasury                         The White House

1500 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW                          1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW

Washington, DC 20220                                           Washington, DC 20500

 

Senator Mitch McConnell                                      Representative Paul D. Ryan

Senate Majority Leader                                           Speaker of the House

317 Russell Senate Office Building                      1233 Longworth HOB

Washington, DC 20510                                           Washington, DC 20515

 

Senator Orrin Hatch                                                Representative Kevin Brady

Chairman                                                                     Chairman

Senate Finance Committee                                   Committee on Ways and Means

219 Dirksen Senate Office Building                     1102 Longworth HOB

Washington, DC 20510                                           Washington, DC 20515

Dear Secretary Mnuchin, Mr. Cohn, Leader McConnell, Speaker Ryan, Chairman Hatch and Chairman Brady:

We write to express our strong support for President Trump’s recent position that forthcoming legislation should not reduce or eliminate incentives for retirement savings. We could not agree more that these are critical middle class tax incentives that work, and are key to ensuring that everyone has the opportunity to save for retirement.

We are alarmed by reports that you continue to consider “Rothification” or severely limiting how much Americans can contribute to their retirement accounts. Experts estimate that Americans have saved between $6.8 trillion and $14 trillion less than what they would need to have a secure retirement. Indeed, only 18 percent of Americans are “very confident” that they have saved enough for retirement. The upfront tax deduction for contributions is a powerful tool in encouraging working and middle class Americans to save for retirement. Reducing the opportunities that millions of Americans have to save for their retirement and secure their standard of living in old age will only serve to put their future financial security more at risk.

In addition to being problematic, these proposals are deeply unpopular. Ninety percent of Americans oppose limiting how much an individual or employer can contribute to their retirement account. Over 60 percent of workers between ages 45 and 64 who participate in 401(k)s for a full year contribute more than $2,400, and could be affected by your efforts to limit these accounts.

Tax reform that is guided by the principle of helping the middle class get ahead simply cannot require retirement savers to foot the bill. Consistent with President Trump’s commitment, we urge you not to include any proposals in forthcoming legislation that would eliminate or curtail retirement savings incentives. 

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