Bob Casey on Social Security
Democratic Sr Senator (PA)
Casey's opponent, Republican Tom Smith, has said he'd let a temporary reduction in the Social Security payroll tax expire in January. He wants taxpayers to be able to divert Social Security taxes into private investment accounts. Smith also says future Medicare beneficiaries should have the option of getting a government check to help buy private coverage.
|Using Social Security taxes for private accounts|
A: I oppose Social Security privatization that drains away money from the Social Security system and would cut Social Security’s guaranteed benefits. The first step to protecting Social Security is to stop the assaults launched against Social Security by the privatization advocates. The next step is to get our fiscal house back in order and grow the economy. These two steps are necessary before considering any kind of changes in Social Security.
CASEY: You need a step by step process. The best remedy for Social Security is economic growth.
Q: Something that’s approaching 70% of the budget, you’re going to grow your way out of it?
CASEY: That’s only part of it. We repeal that tax cut for the top 1%, that’s part of it.
Q: But we’re talking about Social Security.
CASEY: I don’t agree with your premise. I don’t think you’re talking about a crisis. The crisis is privatization.
SANTORUM: That’s no answer.
CASEY: I had a much better answer than yours, because your so-called guarantee is what The Philadelphia Inquirer called “snake oil.” His proposal is to privatize. His proposal drains a trillion dollars out of the trust fund. They’re draining it right now, to pay for those tax cuts for the wealthy that you supported. That’s the wrong policy for Social Security and for the economy.
Proponents recommend voting YES because:
Perhaps the worst example of wasteful spending is when we take the taxes people pay for Social Security and, instead of saving them, we spend them on other things. Even worse than spending Social Security on other things is we do not count it as debt when we talk about the deficit every year. So using the Social Security money is actually a way to hide even more wasteful spending without counting it as debt. This Amendment would change that.
Opponents recommend voting NO because:
This amendment has a fatal flaw. It leaves the door open for private Social Security accounts by providing participants with the option of "pre-funding of at least some portion of future benefits."
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