Syracuse University Professor Eric Kingson has announced that he is seeking to be the democratic party nomination for the 24th Congressional District.
You might not recognize Kingson’s name. Besides his day job of being a Professor of Social Work, he and Nancy Altman has co-authored the Social Security Works!, a book that explains “Why Social Security isn’t going broke and how expanding it will help us all”. A New You Journal of Books review of the Social Security Works! states, “The authors are successful in debunking a number of misconceptions regarding Social Security.” They also started the non-profit organization of the same name. It’s website and Facebook page gives us more information about the organization’s mission and a wealth of updated Social Security information. They are great sources for researchers.
The NY 24 Congressional District includes Cayuga, Onondaga, Wayne Counties, and the Western part of Oswego County. It has been called the Nation’s top swing district since the party representing it has switched four times in the last four elections. Note that the Democrats won in 2008 and 2012—both presidential election years.
The District is presently being represented by former prosecutor Rep. John Kutko. Realizing how politically unstable the 24th is, Katko has voted with his fellow republicans only 83% of the time. In February Katko voted AGAINST a bill that would defund Obamacare. He justified his decision by saying, “I want to repeal Obamacare, but I also want to keep my promise. If and when a replacement is ready, my vote will be to repeal Obamacare.”
Social Security will be a focal issue in the 2016 campaigns. Candidate Kingson, a respected voice in the expand Social Security movement will join Bernie Sanders and Hillary Clinton, Democrat Senators, Congressmen and other candidates to debunk the GOP’s efforts to weaken Social Security including to privatize Social Security and moving the retirement age to 70. Win or Lose, his message will be heard.
Our congressman, Rep. Reed is also involved with changing Social Security. He has moved to weaken it. During his 2016 Campaign against John Plumb, Reed will be defending his amendment to the House Rules that forces the Disability Fund to cut benefits by 20% next fall. Other changes to SSDI are being discussed by the GOP lead House Ways and Means Committee, including requiring non-catostropic disabled (not yet defined) to return to work. Rep. Reed considers the Social Security Disability a “failed federal program“. Remember: Programs are not saved by having their funds reduced.
Although Mr. Kingson is running in the NY 24th Congressional District race, he will have a positive affect in our district. It is great to see an “academic” take the next step to complete the change he has been promoting.