Will Mitt Romney and The Republicans Get What They Wanted All Along?

With the polls tightening in the Presidential race the likelihood of a Romney Administration is growing. Which brings the question up, besides more trickle-down economics what would a Romney Administration mean? Disaster for millions of Americans. If you were born after 1957 then you should read on and consider what a Romney Administration could cost you.
That is because when it comes to ever receiving the Social Security benefits you paid for and expect a Romney Administration could cost you big. While Romney is pandering to seniors who vote in droves for those of us under the age of 55 he offers little hope that he will preserve the Social Security program for us.

Just look at the vague plans he puts forward for Social Security:

Mitt Romney has laid out the approach he would take to modernizing America's entitlement programs, guaranteeing their continued vitality for future generations. Mitt's proposals will not raise taxes and will not affect today's seniors or those nearing retirement. He proposes that Social Security should be adjusted in a couple of commonsense ways that will put it on the path of solvency and ensure that it is preserved for future generations.

First, for future generations of seniors, Mitt believes that the retirement age should be slowly increased to account for increases in longevity.

Second, for future generations of seniors, Mitt believes that benefits should continue to grow but that the growth rate should be lower for those with higher incomes.


First off, Mitt Romney wants to raise the retirement age for all of us. A step that has already been taken not long ago. So what does that mean? If Mitt Romney raises the retirement age by just two years at the current rate of around $14,000 a  year for SSI recipients that is a loss of at least $28,000 for everyone born after 1957. And who really thinks Romney will just raise the age by two years??

Second, look at his second "solution". Romney wants to slow the rate of growth should be slower for those with "higher incomes". However, he does not specify what constitutes "higher incomes". I think everyone knows once this slippery slope is started down that politicians in Washington will make sure that folks of all income levels take a huge benefit cut.

Even more disturbing than that is Mitt Romney's repeated support of privitizing Social Security, a failed idea that started George W. Bush down the hill of being one of the most unpopular Presidents ever. Despite it's many proven failings Mitt Romney has seen fit to support it:

ROMNEY: Currently, we're taking more money into Social Security that we actually send out. So our current seniors, their benefits are not going to change. For people 20 and 30 and 40 years old, we have four major options, for instance, for Social Security. One is the one Democrats want: raise taxes. It's the wrong way to go.

Number two, the president said let's have private accounts and take that surplus money that's being gathered now in Social Security and put that into private accounts. That works.


Later on, he far from walked back from that stance:

June 2007: When a college student asked Romney how he, as president, planned to solidify Social Security's future, he endorsed private accounts: "One thing that the president proposed [on Social Security] that is a good idea is to take some of that money, or all of that surplus money and allow people to have a personal account. So they can invest in things that have a higher rate of return than just government debt. They can invest in things like our stock market or the world's stock market...so that they can get a better return, and maybe that would make up for some of the shortfall. That's a good idea."

October 2007: At a town hall, Romney said there were "two major paths" lawmakers could take to shore up Social Security. The first, he said, was "to raise taxes on people, which I don't want to do. And the other is to allow some portion of people's money that they're now having taken out of their salaries to be invested in Social Security." When an attendee told him his plan was "privatization," Romney replied, "You call it privatization. I call it a private account."

What is really scary about this is even after the market crashed which would have decimated private accounts if George W. Bush would have had his way, Romney still supported privitization:

What is shocking about Romney's embrace of private accounts in his book is that it was published after a financial crisis that would have devastated retirement accounts for millions of Americans had the push for privatization succeeded. According to a Center for American Progress analysis, an October 2008 retiree would have lost $26,000 in a private Social Security account, and that report was done before the market bottomed out in 2009. Millions of Americans who already save in some sort of private account - a 401(k), for instance - lost nearly everything in the crisis, and Social Security is the only source of retirement income they have left.

Then, when faced with facts that support the real solution to Social Security Romney did what he has done best this whole campaign. He lied:

Upon Romney's proclamation that raising the cap on income taxed for Social Security purposes would not "begin to solve the problem," the woman presented evidence backing up her claim, telling him that raising the cap would ensure the program's solvency for at least 75 years. Romney responded, "I don't agree with your numbers." He then guessed that Americans would rather face benefit cuts than an increase in the amount of income taxed, despite poll numbers showing that an overwhelming majority of Americans are opposed to benefit cuts.


He made his own version of the truth from Republican fantasy land that folks like us actually would rather see our benefits cut than have folks like Romney pay their fair share.

Now contrast that with the ideas President Obama has for Social Security:

President Obama Outlined Six Principles For Social Security Reform, Including Opposing Any Efforts To Privatize Or Weaken Social Security, To Slash Benefits For Future Generations, Or To Reduce Basic Benefits For Current Recipients.  "The President is committed to making sure that Social Security is solvent and viable for the American people, now and in the future. He is strongly opposed to privatizing Social Security and looks forward to working in a bipartisan way to strengthen Social Security for years to come. Guiding the Administration in these talks will be the President's six principles for reform: any reform should strengthen Social Security for future generations and restore long-term solvency; the Administration will oppose any measures to privatize or weaken the Social Security system; while all measures to strengthen solvency should be on the table, the Administration will not accept an approach that slashes benefits for future generations; no current beneficiaries should see their basic benefits reduced; reform should strengthen retirement security for the most vulnerable, including low-income seniors; reform should maintain robust disability and survivors' benefits." [White House Fact Sheet, February 2012]


In other words if you were born after 1957 and were thinking about voting for Mitt Romney you better think twice. Not only will his version of trickle-down economics cost our country dearly, but his vision for Social Security will cost you at least tens of thousands of dollars personally and will most likely cause the collapse of the system altogether.

Of course, that is what Mitt Romney and the Republicans have wanted all along.

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