Our nation's leaders have an opportunity to regain the confidence of American voters by saying what they mean and meaning what they say in a full-throated defense against attacks on America's social safety net. It's a simple argument for fairness and economic reason. Voters are tired of false choices in which benefits for middle-class Americans are traded away in closed-door deals to reduce tax breaks millionaires don't need. America's seniors want Washington to get its fiscal house in order, but they also know cutting benefits to those still struggling with skyrocketing health care costs, diminished home values, unemployment, decimated savings and a shaky economy is not shared sacrifice. While some in Washington continue to argue we can't afford Social Security and Medicare, we can't afford to lose these financial stabilization programs. Social Security alone provides $696 billion to our national economy each year through earned benefits provided to 54 million retirees, disabled workers, survivors and children. It's fiscal folly to cut the very programs keeping millions of average Americans afloat while tax breaks for the wealthy, according to the National Priorities Project, drain $11.6 million from the Treasury every hour.