President Bush’s State of the Union message once again calls on Congress to address the coming tsunami of Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid costs. With 77 million baby boomers retiring, the ratio of taxpaying workers to retirees will fall to just 2:1. In the absence of reform, America would have to choose between permanently raising taxes by more than $11,000 per household, or eliminating every remaining federal program to fund those new costs.
Congress should follow the President’s lead and create a bipartisan commission to come up with fast-track legislation to address this long-term fiscal imbalance. The price of inaction is simply too high.