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On the 80th anniversary of the creation of Social Security, Americans who have been buffeted by repeated warnings about long term funding problems overwhelmingly believe that the nation’s premier retirement program is in serious trouble – with many convinced they will never draw down any benefits.
A new Gallup survey published on Thursday found that 66 percent of Americans believe Social Security is in a “state of crisis,” while slightly more than half of those still working doubt they will ever receive Social Security benefits. Not surprisingly, millennials who are much further away from retirement than their parents and elders are far more pessimistic, with 64 percent saying they are convinced they will never draw Social Security benefits.
The Social Security Act – signed into law by Franklin D. Roosevelt on August 14, 1935 amidst the Great Depression, has long been the bedrock of retirement for tens of millions of low and middle income Americans, especially because the private savings rate of Americans has waxed and waned over the years.
A separate survey of 1,200 adults by AARP, a major senior citizen advocacy group, confirms that Social Security is at the very core of most Americans’ retirement. Indeed, 80 percent of Americans of all age groups say they plan to rely on Social Security in a substantial way or rely on it somewhat. Thirty-three percent of respondents say that Social Security is the source of income that they rely on or plan to rely on most during their retirement. Read more on The Fiscal Times.