Taxpayers Should Not Be Paying Social Security Benefits to Dead People, Says Rep. Ted Budd

If you are dead, you don’t need to be getting Social Security benefits, says North Carolina Congressman Ted Budd.

The Republican lawmaker is launching a new initiative – “Budd’s Budget Busters” – to identify wasteful government spending and propose more efficient alternatives.

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The primarily focus is to curb federal government expenditures on individuals who are no longer alive.

The Republican congressman describes the program as “a new effort to highlight and push for common sense ways that Congress can cut government waste and save taxpayer money.”

“In order to cut government waste, we’ve really got to highlight it,” Budd told The Todd Starnes Show on Thursday. “We’re also going to come out with a solution to fix it.” Budd said identifying a wasteful government problem will be a weekly, reoccurring agenda.

“A lot of this is really about highlighting what’s already existed and has fallen by the wayside,” Budd continued. “As Republicans, we’ve got our share of the blame.”

Budd noted that some Republican members of Congress “have been quite complicit about growing our deficit, which grows our debt.”

In the U.S. House of Representatives, Budd serves on the Financial Services Committee. “As a country, we can’t keep spending more than we take in. The math doesn’t add up,” he wrote on Twitter.

One particular initiative is to reevaluate the Social Security Administration’s Death Database. An audit in 2015 found “6.5 million people in the system that are implausibly 112 years old,” Budd’s press release states.

“And they’ve already paid out $37.7 million dollars to deceased veterans since 2016 … I’m sure much more since then,” he told Starnes. Check out Rep. Budd’s entire radio interview here.

Budd said his H.R. 2543 bill has a simple, straightforward title: The “Stopping Improper Payments to Deceased People Act.”

“If they’re dead, we don’t’ need to be paying them,” he told Starnes, adding that the United States’ Medicare program has paid out over three million dollars in prescription drugs toward dead beneficiaries. In addition, “over $1 billion has been paid to farmers who had been dead for over three years.”

“That sounds like fraud to me. This really is waste, fraud, and abuse,” he continued. “We can at least fix this, and that gets us well on our way to solving the even bigger problems.”

“This common sense bipartisan legislation should be a no-brainer,” Budd added.