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Friday, August 11, 2006

Dems Believe Social Security will Decide '06 Elections

A conservative on-line news site reported this story --- but with typical panicky conservative 'spin' by the Cato Institute to conclude the article. More research to come on Social Security from MrKen45sWorld soon...

By Monisha Bansal Staff Writer
August 11, 2006

( - Americans are more likely to vote for Democrats in 2006 because the future of Social Security rests on the outcome of the midterm congressional elections, according to Reps. Robert Menendez (D-N.J.) and Sander Levin (D-Mich.).

"Republicans apparently haven't learned their lesson from the 2005 push for [Social Security] privatization that the American public, armed with the facts, will overwhelmingly see privatization for the bad deal that it is," Menendez said Thursday on a conference call organized by the liberal advocacy group Campaign for America's Future.

President Bush proposed allowing taxpayers to divert some of their payroll taxes from Social Security into personal accounts for investment in the stock market under strict government limitations. Menendez believes Republicans will attempt to change the country's supplemental retirement program again in 2007.

"Then, as I believe now, the American public will refuse to trade the most successful anti-poverty program in the country's history for a scheme that would cut benefits, would explode the national debt and would trade a retirement security guarantee for a risky Wall Street gamble," Menendez argued.

"That means Social Security as we know it depends on the outcome of the 2006 elections," Menendez added.

Levin agreed.

"This is going to be a critical issue for '06, for the future of Social Security, and I think there is no way the electorate is going to allow Republicans to hide from their record or to hide from where President Bush is on this issue," said Levin.

"If the Republicans were to retain the House and the Senate with the president, everybody should expect another big push," Levin said.

"That is one reason I am confident that the Democrats are going to take over the House and the Senate," Levin added.

Roger Hickey, co-director of Campaign for America's Future, shares the lawmakers' belief that "the issue of Social Security is not dead."

"In 2005, President Bush promoted the privatization of Social Security as his top domestic priority," Hickey said "However, once the American people understood what he was proposing, they overwhelmingly rejected the idea."

But Michael Tanner, director of the libertarian Cato Institute's Project on Social Security Choice, said Democrats will have to do more than just oppose privatization to win in 2007.

"The Democrats don't have any plan to keep Social Security going," Tanner said.

"The fact is that Social Security begins to run a deficit in just 11 years; overall, it is facing $15 trillion is unfunded liabilities," Tanner told Cybercast News Service.

"Because we failed to act on Social Security last year, the problem got $550 billion worse, and so far, all the Democrats are able to do is say 'Don't do anything,'' Tanner added.

"The public prefers not to touch Social Security, [but] unfortunately, it has to be touched," Tanner concluded. "It's not sustainable the way it is currently structured."

'There are several small fixes to the program that would compensate for a possible future shortfall...the Bush administration’s dire warnings are full of hot air:' -- Ronni Bennett

“Another way to examine the issue, say [economist Dean] Baker, is to note that the revenues lost by the Bush tax cuts are equivalent to 2 percent of the nation’s gross domestic product. Without those cuts, projected revenues would be five times greater than needed to cover the $4.8 trillion Social Security revenue gap after 2040 forecast in the 2006 report. ‘I’m hard-pressed to see what the problem is,’ he says.”
The Christian Science Monitor, 8 May 2006

quote also curtesy of Ronni Bennett in her excellent series 'Social Security Privitazation - Part 24: It’s B-a-a-a-ck' (5/10/06)



Anonymous Scott said...

Even though the article you reference is terribly biased, Senator Bob Menendez is leading the fight against Social Security privatization. To show your support for Menendez and your opposition to the Republican privateers, sign the online petition at

12:00 AM

Blogger MrKen45 said...

Thx for the info, Scott. I have signed the petition. I believe that I properly addressed the bias with Ronni Bennett's comments.

3:44 PM


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