Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Tommy and the Privatization of Social Security

The Center on Budget and Policy Priorities came out with a new report today about how Social Security has lifted millions Americans out of poverty.   This is no surprise to many of us but sometimes it is important to put actual numbers on these kinds of results. Based on 2011 census data they have determined that without Social Security, 21.4 million Americans would be in poverty today.  The study then brakes down numbers by state and it determines that from 2009-2011 approximately 307,000 Wisconsinites were lifted out of poverty because of Social Security.

In 2004 while Tommy Thompson was trying to support George W. Bush's push to privatize Social Security, he made the following statement as reported by local media in Iowa.
In addition to living healthier lives, people should be setting up private retirement accounts and investing in long-term care policies. ‘Americans have to start taking responsibility for ourselves,’ Thompson said. [Dubuque Telegraph Herald, 10/30/2004]
Try to set aside his arrogance for a moment and ask a few of the obvious questions.  Does he still support a Bush style privatization effort of Social Security? We already know that he plans to "do away with" Medicare and Medicaid, so does he support something similar for Social Security? Wisconsinites deserve to know his answers and the full details of his plan before the election. This is especially true for those 307,000 Wisconsinites that have been kept out of poverty directly because of our current Social Security system.

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