In some ways, the central question is not only what the government owes to pensioners but what citizens owe to one another. From the pews of the church, Cindy Gould, a fourth-grade teacher, said that under the current system, she had 11 years to go until retirement. Under Ms. Raimondo’s plan, she might have to work longer. But, Ms. Gould, 54, said she was willing to do so if that meant the elderly would get the medical care they need.

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