From our D.C. lobbyists:

On the Senate floor Oct. 3, Sen. John Kennedy (R-La.) made a statement in support of eliminating the Windfall Elimination Provision and Government Pension Offset as part of the tax legislation being drafted in the House Ways and Means Committee. There is a bill in the House (H. R. 1205, proposing to repeal the Government Pension Offset and Windfall Elimination Provisions) that was introduced in February and has more than 140 sponsors, but has not moved in committee. We expect to see a draft tax bill by the end of this month, October 27.

Here is an edited copy of Kennedy's speech:

When we talk about tax reform — and we are going to be talking a lot about tax reform here over the next few weeks — we need to make clear that we are talking about reforms that will help these middle-class Americans. They are the people who get up every day, go to work, obey the law, and try to do the right thing by their kids and teach their kids morals and try to save a little money for retirement.

Let me be blunt. I would like to eliminate the Windfall Elimination Provision and the Government Pension Offset in the Social Security office. I think it would be a vital step in ensuring that our middle-class seniors can enjoy continued economic security after their retirements. Not only would it help the economy, but it is the right thing to do.

I sum up. We can provide economic relief immediately to some of those middle-class retirees about whom I have been talking by eliminating the Windfall Elimination Provision and the Government Pension Offset of the Social Security system. It will not cost much money. It will have a small effect on the cost of Social Security, at about 0.13 percent — not 13 percent but 0.13 percent. It is a little over one-tenth of 1 percent.

On Oct. 10, U.S. Rep. Mike Conaway (R-Texas) also voiced support for WEP repeal in a statement on the House floor:

Mr. Speaker, I am proud to represent thousands of teachers across west Texas who have dedicated their careers to educating and preparing our children for the future. As a former member of the Midland Independent School Board, I understand the impact these selfless individuals have on our communities. Unfortunately, we honor their service to our communities by unfairly withholding Social Security benefits that they have earned through secondary employment.

While this policy, known as the Windfall Elimination Provision, was well-intended, it has proven to be ill-conceived. Many educators have been harmed by the unintended consequences that have created uncertainty and put a damper on the otherwise joyous occasion of retirement. It is imperative that we solve this issue and give our Texas teachers the ability to collect the Social Security benefits that they deserve. I remain committed to working with my colleagues in the House to find a fair and equitable resolution to this issue to ensure that our educators have access to the Social Security benefits and pensions they most certainly have earned.