WASHINGTON, D.C. (WKBN) – Ohio Senator Sherrod Brown, chairman of the Senate Finance Social Security, Pensions and Family Policy Subcommittee, spoke on the Senate floor Tuesday about the importance of protecting Social Security.

The solvency of the program is at issue just about every election season.

Social Security is basically broken down into two trust funds. One for seniors (OASI) and one for those with a disability (DI). These funds do not have the ability to borrow in order to continue paying benefits when dedicated taxes are not sufficient.

According to the Social Security Administration (SSA), both funds face long-term financing shortfalls. Right now, SSA says that OASI has enough money to pay benefits “on a timely basis” until 2034. At that time, the fund’s reserves will become depleted and continuing tax income will be enough to pay about 77% of benefits.

The Disability Insurance (DI) Trust Fund, which pays disability benefits, would be able to pay scheduled benefits only until 2057.

Brown called on the Biden Administration to nominate a permanent Social Security commissioner to oversee the program and any reforms.

“Social Security is our government’s promise to working men and women – a promise that they will be able to retire with dignity,” Brown said. “Support for Social Security cuts across party lines, geographical lines and racial lines.”

Brown has accused Republicans of trying to undermine the program, but GOP members say their efforts, such as extending the age of retirement and reducing benefits for top earners, are ways to extend the life of Social Security, not bankrupt it.

President Biden recently tweeted a warning about what would happen if Republicans took control of Congress.

“Social Security will be on the chopping block. But if you support Democrats, I promise you: Social Security will be protected. Period,” President Biden wrote.

The bottom line is that cost will outpace tax revenues dedicated to the trust funds if nothing changes. But keep in mind this is not the first time Social Security has been in jeopardy. According to the SSA, between 1973 and 1983, the funds were operating with a negative cash flow and depleting reserves. Amendments made substantial modifications to the program that made things better with a substantive buildup of assets to carry the program through to today.