And these ages are also targets in the contentious debate over how to shore up the shaky finances of the massive entitlement programs.
Republican presidential candidate Nikki Haley recently zeroed in on raising the retirement age for Americans in their 20s as a way to reform Social Security, saying it should match their life expectancy. The controversial position was echoed by GOP Rep. Nancy Mace of South Carolina on CNN’s “State of the Union” last Sunday. Neither said what the new retirement age should be.
Many folks may think that people can start collecting their full Social Security benefits at age 65, which was the retirement age for decades. But Congress changed that as part of its 1983 overhaul of the entitlement program.
Lawmakers gradually increased the full retirement age – the first to be affected were people who turned 65 in 2003. Americans born in 1960 or later must wait until they turn 67 to collect their full benefits.