In 2005 then President George W. Bush attempted to privatize social security, an attempt that failed and was then dismissed and now GOP presidential hopeful Rick Perry (R. Texas) is attempting to revive that plan.
Speaking with Fox News Sunday Perry said current recipients wouldn’t be hit by the changes he’s proposing while revealing:
“If you’re on it or approaching it,” Perry said, your benefits would remain unchanged while he added “give them a private account or whatever it is.”
As the HuffintonPost points out:
President Bush after his reelection proposed private Social Security accounts as the centerpiece of his reform effort. The plan, tremendously unpopular, never went anywhere in Congress and contributed to the 2006 Democratic takeover of the legislature. The stock market crash of 2008 made the notion that much less appealing, as 401(k)s shriveled up while Social Security checks kept coming.
This is not the first time Perry has focused on social security reform, during the start of his 2011 campaign he called social security a “Ponzi scheme” and warned younger voters that they would not have social security in the future with social security actuaries predicting that the plans full benefits will be completely depleted by 2037. In should be noted that income from payroll taxes will be able to pay four-fifths of benefits through 2084.
In the meantime a 2010 Congressional Research Service report explained that:
“If all earnings were subject to the payroll tax, but the base was retained for benefit calculations, the Social Security Trust Funds would remain solvent for the next 75 years.”
Currently only the first $106,800 earned is taxed for social security benefits.
After discussing his social security plan Perry, who has slipped drastically down in the polls since entering the race as the frontrunner 80 days ago took some time to attack current leader Mitt Romney who he says flip flops on the issues too much:
“I have been a consistent conservative. I have always been in favor of the Second Amendment and protecting Second Amendment. I’ve always been pro-life, I’ve always been a fiscal conservative, and Mitt’s been on both sides of those issues,” Perry said. “He’s been through a ban on guns in Massachusetts, he’s been for pro-abortion, he’s been you know for supporting gay rights and now he’s on the other side of those issues. So from the standpoint of having different positions, we certainly do. We are very, very different from the standpoint of consistency on those issues that I’ve just mentioned.”
Perry will have plenty of chances to defend his views against Mitt Romney after he agreed to five more upcoming debates. At one point Perry told Fox News Sunday “I really like getting out and being able to talk to people, just like I’m talking with you today where you have time to lay out your ideas” but given his opponents large margin in recent polls it became apparent that he couldn’t skip some debates as originally planned.
A Des Moines Register poll released late Saturday placed Perry in fifth place, tied with Newt Gingrich, at seven percent, while Mitt Romney was at a consistent 22 percent with Herman Caine sitting at 23 percent which given the margin of error for the poll places him in a dead heat with Romney.
Do you think Rick Perry can still save his Presidential hopes?