Research shows that citizens in rural counties tend to get a greater percentage of their income from Social Security than those in urban counties. Social Security checks made up 9.3% of personal income in rural counties -- nearly double that of urban counties -- meaning that reductions in spending on the program would hit rural areas especially hard. "Cuts would have a bigger negative impact on rural places, absolutely. They are more dependent on Social Security," said geographer Peter Nelson of Middlebury College.

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