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Activists participate in a rally urging the expansion of Social Security benefits in front of the White House on July 13, 2015 in Washington, D.C.

Activists participate in a rally urging the expansion of Social Security benefits in front of the White House on July 13, 2015 in Washington, D.C. (Photo: Win McNamee/Getty Images)

Applause as Biden Withdraws 'Horrific' Trump Rule Attacking Social Security Disability Recipients

"Wonderful news," said one activist.

Jake Johnson

Social Security defenders on Thursday celebrated news that the Biden White House has withdrawn a regulation pushed by the Trump administration that, if finalized, could have stripped disability insurance benefits from hundreds of thousands of vulnerable people.

One of several attacks on Social Security the Trump administration attempted to complete during its final days in power, the proposed rule would have subjected some disability insurance recipients to more frequent eligibility reviews—a move that would have added another layer of difficulty to an already strenuous process aimed at determining whether beneficiaries still qualify for the program.

"Wonderful news," tweeted healthcare activist Peter Morley, who specifically thanked advocacy group Social Security Works for its outspoken opposition to the regulation.

After the rule was first published in the Federal Register in November of 2019, Social Security Works executive director Alex Lawson told Common Dreams that the proposal represented "the Trump administration's most brazen attack on Social Security yet."

"When Ronald Reagan implemented a similar benefit cut, it ripped away the earned benefits of 200,000 people. Ultimately, Reagan was forced to reverse his attack on Social Security after massive public outcry—but not before people suffered and died," Lawson said. "Every current and future Social Security beneficiary must band together to defeat this horrific proposal, or else all of our earned benefits will be next."

On Thursday, Social Security Works applauded all of those who spoke out against the Trump administration's proposed policy change:

President Joe Biden's record of pushing for cuts to Social Security was the subject of much progressive criticism during the 2020 presidential campaign, but he vowed during the race to protect the beloved New Deal program and increase its modest monthly payments.

In order to boost the chances of achieving the expansion of Social Security benefits that he promised, progressive advocacy groups are urging Biden to fire Social Security Administration Commissioner Andrew Saul and Deputy Commissioner David Black, Trump administration holdovers who worked to advance the former president's far-reaching assault on the program.

"The only thing that is acceptable at the Social Security Administration is a new commissioner and a new deputy commissioner who believe in the system," Lawson told Common Dreams last week. "The movement won't accept anything less."


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Pointing to 'Recently Obtained Evidence,' Jan. 6 Panel Calls Surprise Tuesday Hearing

The announcement came less than a week after the House panel delayed new hearings until next month, citing a "deluge" of fresh evidence.

Common Dreams staff ·


Looming US Supreme Court Climate Decision Could 'Doom' Hope for Livable Future

"The immediate issue is the limits of the EPA's ability to regulate greenhouse gases," said one scientist. "The broader issue is the ability of federal agencies to regulate anything at all."

Jessica Corbett ·


Supreme Court Takes 'Wrecking Ball' to Separation of Church and State With Prayer Ruling

After decades of affirming that prayers led by school officials are unconstitutional, said Justice Sonia Sotomayor, "the court now charts a different path."

Julia Conley ·


Louisiana Judge Blocks State's Post-Roe Abortion Ban

"Abortion care will resume in the state and a hearing has been set for July 8th," said the Center for Reproductive Rights.

Jake Johnson ·


Progressives Launch 'Four More' Campaign to Demand Supreme Court Expansion

"In a true democracy, power rests with the people," one campaigner asserted. "And the only way to take our power back is to take back the court."

Brett Wilkins ·

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