Wednesday, June 29, 2005

GOP Pushing for Vote on Private Accounts

The Turner Report first alerted us to Congressman Roy Blunt's pledge to bring the President's social security plan (if only the President would actually define his plan) to a vote in July or September. The Associated Press has more via

The measure "begins to take that Social Security trust fund and put it into an account that will be there" for wage earners, Speaker Dennis Hastert, R-Ill., said at a news conference Wednesday.

Democrats swiftly attacked the plan. Rep. Steny Hoyer, D-Md., said Republicans were setting up a "shell game" out of a desire to undermine the Depression-era benefit program.


The announcement by Hastert and other GOP leaders marked a turning point in the politically charged struggle over Social Security, the first time senior Republicans in either house of Congress have pledged to put legislation to a vote.

Rep. Roy Blunt of Missouri, the GOP whip, said that would come either in July or September.


GOP leaders said the measure would be incorporated into a broader bill making changes in pensions and other areas relating to retirement.

Mindful of the political sensitivity of the issue, Republicans began closed-door meetings at which members of the rank and file were advised how to describe the program to their constituents over the coming weeklong congressional break.


Blunt said that under the legislation "every Social Security dollar gets spent to assure retirement benefits."

At the same time, Republican officials conceded that at least for the first three years the program is in operation, the government would continue to borrow the surplus funds and spend them as needed. The difference would be that the debt was owed to individuals rather than the Social Security trust fund as a whole.

Rep. Jim McCrery, R-La., one of the authors of the bill, said it would raise the government's official deficit forecast by between $774 billion and $1 trillion over the next decade.

Note that the GOP held closed-door meetings to explain "how to describe the program" so that they can attempt to bamboozle you into believing the program is something it is not. The goal is to gut Social Security, something the GOP has been trying to do ever since FDR introduced the program.

Note, also, that the legislation will be "incorporated into a broader bill making changes in pensions and other areas relating to retirement." Why? To try to make the plan that would gut Social Security appear to be better for your retirement.

And finally, note that the President's plan will increase the national debt. The GOP wants you to believe it will only be $1 trillion over the next decade. Others have estimated it much higher.

Go to or The Truth About Social Security for a detailed explaination of the real social security facts.