Skip to comments.Oh my: Pawlenty calls for Medicare and Social Security reform — in Florida
Posted on 05/25/2011 11:40:30 AM PDT by SeekAndFind
First he goes after ethanol in Iowa, now this. What’s next? Telling Texans it’s time to wean themselves off of barbecue? Good lord. This isn’t a campaign, it’s an intervention.
Alternate headline: “Tim Pawlenty now unelectable in not one but two early primary states.”
A day after telling Iowans their beloved ethanol subsidies will have to go, Republican presidential candidate Tim Pawlenty used a stop in senior-heavy Florida to call for reining in Social Security and Medicare benefits for future retirees…
It’s part of a tough-medicine tour, designed to highlight Pawlenty’s willingness to tell “hard truths.” He’s also planning to visit Washington to call for less-generous pay and benefits for public sector employees and to New York to call for an end to Wall Street bailouts…
Pawlenty said Social Security’s retirement age must “gradually” increase for people who are not yet in the system. He also called for ending cost-of-living increases for wealthy retirees. He said he’ll release details soon and said the changes would not affect current retirees.
That’s from today’s Facebook town hall, where he also took a question that seemed geared towards winning a certain fiscal-con icon’s constituency:
In the state of Indiana, our governor has been really hard on teachers, asked one girl. What is your view of education?
Pawlenty voiced a position on education similar to the reforms passed by Daniels in the last Indiana legislative session: school choice and vouchers, support for charter schools, and saying that education policy should be geared to help children and should put their needs first, rather than the interests of adults in public employee union movement.
The choice of the question seemed deliberate, as a way to position Pawlenty as the natural alternative for Daniels supporters.
The straight talk on entitlements, I think, is mainly geared towards giving him cover with the base for when he starts inching away from Ryan’s Medicare plan. He praised Ryan’s budget when speaking to reporters after the Facebook town hall today but reminded them that he’ll be introducing his own plan in the coming months. With good reason: The more Senate Republicans bail on Ryan — Olympia Snowe is the latest — the closer we get to the sort of tipping point imagined by Nate Silver. It’s easier for the GOP to deflect concerns about Ryan’s Medicare reforms if they’re voting party-line, less easy when the RINO contingent of Snowe, Collins, and Brown defects and thereby implicitly signals to centrists that Ryan’s budget is “extreme.” T-Paw’s trying to massage both sides here (much as he did in Iowa), hinting without saying that he thinks Ryan’s plan is extreme too but not so much that entitlement reform should be avoided. Exit quotation: “What I know is this: There just can’t be any more sacred cows.”
I like his willingness to tell folks who’ll be hurt by a cut, before the election. Still not sure he’s our best shot, but I like this.
Reminds me of Mondale promising to raise taxes.
Well, if the barbecue is federally subsidized using tax payer funds then I certainly hope so.
Pawlenty said Social Securitys retirement age must gradually increase for people who are not yet in the system.
What does this mean? You are in the system the minute you pay a penny towards this program. So basically raising the age will be for 15 year olds and lower.....16 year olds will run out and get a job just to get into the system.
Well, like Mondale it may be political suicide. But at least T-Paw, not Mondale, would be economically CORRECT (reforming entitlements, phasing out ethanol subsidies).
Pawlenty has potential to be the Paul Ryan of this race: willing to propose tough solutions to REAL problems. He may not be as teleprompter-dependent as Hussein, but he ought to be considered as a better man than the current occupant of the Oval Office.
By the way, I am still waiting for someone to tell me how Hussein's two nights at Buckingham Palace are part of his LASER LIKE FOCUS ON JOBS.
I like his willingness to tell folks wholl be hurt by a cut, before the election. Still not sure hes our best shot, but I like this.
Not one word about how HE is going to feel the pain. What about no pay raises for Congress for 50 years. How about a 50 percent pay cut. Congress has NEVER had to feel the pain of any financial situation.
Pretty sure by “in the system” he means “post-current-retirement age.” Typically the proposals are to grrrrradually increase SS retirement age to 70 or even 72, but only someone who’s 25 today would have to wait for 72. Someone who’s 45 today might have to go to 69. Folks 55 and up (again, in a typical reform proposal) wouldn’t be changed.
I think I agree with your underlying point, but T-Paw is a former governor. He's not in Congress.
Sometimes you have to let a drunk hit rock bottom before you can convince him that he has a problem. Drink up America.
Good point....maybe he should announce it anyway to wake up Congress.
Thanks for that post. I still don’t see how this will save any money in the system at least not for a long time. We just lowered the Social Security tax and now they want to raise the age to save it. Why not just put the two percent tax back on. I know we hate taxes but I think people will hate to work another two to four years.
“I like his willingness to tell folks wholl be hurt by a cut, before the election. Still not sure hes our best shot, but I like this.”
I’m with you on this. I really like his emphasis on telling the truth....but have made no firm commitment yet.
Wow. The man states the obvious and gets skewered for it. I’m all for candidates telling the truth rather than us having a “best liar contest” every four years.
I’m not sure I follow you. Maybe you can help me.
1. When was the SS payroll tax rate lowered? If it was, I am shocked I missed it.
2. Pushing back the retirement age will make a huge difference. It’s also quite fair if one looks at the way in which SS was initially “sold,” when life expectancy was actually LOWER than the SS eligibility age. Now it is common for folks to spend decades on SS (and, also at odds with the initial SS plan in the 1930s, they expect it to pay for the bulk of their expenses, not just as a supplement). It’s just unsustainable, particularly with the Baby Boom entering retirement with 1.7 kids each.
Yes starting this past January, Social Security tax was lowered by 2 percent. Obama did this. Really stupid at a time when we are having problems with the program.
I’m pretty sure you are talking about a mere reduction in the paycheck-by-paycheck WITHHELD amount. The underlying SS tax rates that you must pay annually are not changed. (Because the amount withheld during the year is less, however, you must make up the difference when you file.)
Will he go to the border states and demand higher, longer fences?
In this election, it's going to take a candidate with not only a backbone of his own, but one who's also willing to wear the enemy's vertebrae as a trophy necklace.
This is just one example of a google search. I heard it in December because it was all over the news and people were excited over it. It was an instant pay raise for the entire work force. You probably wondered why you received such a huge pay raise in January but didn’t realize the reason. You may have thought that your company gave you a raise.....Nope it was the United States of America.
Pawlenty’s going for the ‘big balls’ approach to politics. It has worked for Christie and was working for Trump for a few weeks.
I think I like it. He’s definitely on my list.
You raise a good point about the amnesty issue (a hugh, series problem for Texas Gov. Perry if HE jumps in). A lot of far-from-the-borders conservatives are flaky on amnesty. (For that matter, so are a lot of McCains and Perrys who ARE close.) Is Pawlenty? We’ll have to see.
It aint working Tim, I wish it was but it just aint.
The old folks ears close up tight as soon as they hear the words "medicare" and "reform" in the same sentence, and stay shut through the part about a later kick-in date that won't affect them at all. I know how old retirees think because I not only worked closely with many of them in FL, I'm now one of them myself.
BTW, just to make my self clear, I'm all for Pawlenty's plan. If there aren't some major changes medicare will fail totally and my kids won't recover ANY of their past, current, present, or future payroll deductions in the form of partially pre-paid medical expenses. But try telling that to my retiree neighbors and the only sound you will hear are the creaks and groans made by their ears closing. Personally I think it's probably a union mindset thingy, but that just may be because I'm as biased against unions as I am against Obama's commie friends in the White house.
Again, you are talking about a reduction in the withheld-each-paycheck tax. The annual amount you owe, on a given income, is not reduced.
The FICA tax reduction was part of the deal renewing the Bush Tax Cuts in December.
Im pretty sure you are talking about a mere reduction in the paycheck-by-paycheck WITHHELD amount. The underlying SS tax rates that you must pay annually are not changed. (Because the amount withheld during the year is less, however, you must make up the difference when you file.)
Fortunately you are wrong. The reason is because in 2010 everyone was given a 400 or 800 dollar rebate on your taxes. In 2011, I added this amount to the taxes because I thought we had to.....well guess what? I was wrong and the IRS sent me a check for the amount because I was wrong.......First time that has ever happened to me.
So what you are saying is that when we file in 2012 for 2011 taxes, we are going to have to write a check for the 2 percent that we were given. I promise you that you are wrong. I know you believe that you are right but I am grateful that you are misinformed.
If the annual tax rates were reduced, not just the amount withheld, then I certainly stand corrected.
This is what the government itself says: It’s a FICA tax cut — not JUST a withholding cut, as I was stubbornly saying — BUT the amounts will get repaid to SS by “The general fund,” in other words, general tax revenues. They’ll have to raise OTHER taxes (or cut spending that otherwise wouldn’t need to be cut) to “pay for” this “tax cut.” It’s all smoke and mirrors.
(in the footnote)
RE: Mondale lives.
Pawlenty = Mondale?
Heaven help us if this means Obama = Reagan
Ryan’s plan or any other kind of real reform is far better than what the Democrats had in mind to do to seniors with ObamaCare; you know, letting nature take its course. That should be part of the discussion whenever Republicans talk about the issue or we’re not going to get anywhere with the Dims playing dirty with Mediscare.
What problem? First, it was a temporary reduction. Second, payroll taxes will cover payouts until 2017 without needing to tap the surplus which itself is good until 2037.
Pawlenty is a fool and needs to step aside now, Saying we need to cut the debt is good, saying we need to cut medicare and then bring Ryan’;s plan up is political suicide.
I wish Bibi could run for president as he is what w need right now and one of a few who has balls to take obama on and call out the media who have been paid off by George Soros
Ryan should never have done that plan in public, it was a gift to the left and now they are using it against us and scaring people and it is working.
They used the Ryan plan to attack us in JAX and NY and it has worked both times and we have lost.
It is foolish for Pawlenty but then again he also wants cap and trade.
No way cap and trade Pawlenty , move on and give it up
nail on head
cap and trade Pawlenty is a fool and saying what he siad is plain stupid
I’m waiting for the guy who is FIRST going to cut all the $$ we send other countries who hate us, then going to have a real plan to find and stop the fraud and WASTE the govt spends. Then he will stop all government funding of Planned Parenthood, public television, medicare waste in the form of hundreds of mailings that no one reads, stop funding ridiculous studies such as men and women are different.
After attacking these and many other nonsensical spendings, then he can talk to me about cutting senior citizen programs or American workers programs.
That’s where I see no candidate yet and I am sure I will not anytime soon. Proof none of them is serious about the money problems of our country.
yea lets tell the voters how we are going to change medicare, my o my that has worked hasn’t it.
In two weeks we have lost two elections because of the GOP talking about the Ryan plan
It was stupid to make public the Ryan plan in the first place.
The simple fact is we’re going to lose this election if we keep thinking that if we back and talk about the Ryan plan .
The Dems have been handed a gift and now we’re losing as they use the plan against us.
The Dems don’t say do they that they want homosexuality taught in schools, have open borders, cut the military, increase taxes.
no because they know they will not get votes so lets play the game hard and takethem on instead of this crap of saying how we’re changing medicare and any republican backing this plan in public has lost an election and is very stupid.
RE: saying we need to cut medicare and then bring Ryans plan up is political suicide.
NOT implementing Ryan’s plan and letting Medicare stand as it is now IS REAL SUICIDE.
Choose your poison.
really so we say this and then we have handed the left a victory, even a blind man can see that we have given the left a gift and have lost two elections in two weeks because of this gift we gave them
you want to tell people we’re to cut medicare, increase the age etc then fine but don’t expect to win
are you for crap and trade because this elitist hack is, he’s an idiot
thank you , at least you get it.
As soon as we talk about the Ryan plan we lose votes and give a gift tot he left.
It is that simple and we have lost two elections in two weeks because of this plan.
As soon as we tell voters about medicare then we lose but of course some don;t see that and think telling it like it is will get it for us when infact we have lost two out of two.
Politics is a game and we seem to be losing using this Ryan plan.
I know a bunch of republicans who are old and hate obama but as soon as they heard about this they said they will not vote.
I wish some would wake the hell up instead of this cap and trade fool backing this plan on medicare
great post , but shame some will not agree.
We should be mentioning how obamacare is hurting medicare
Tim Pawlenty is telling people what they need to hear and the reaction is the same regardless of political party. Everyone wants it fixed so long as they are not impacted. Can’t be done folks. I expect America to continue its decline and one day she will hit bottom.
<bangs head on desk?
YES IT IS suicide to not address it but as soon as you mention changing medicare then you lose the election.
Hell I’m not basing this on maybe , but facts, we have lost two elections in two weeks because of talking about Ryan’s plan, that is a FACT
so if you want to go out there and talk medicare and about cutting it then expect to lose.
Once we get in then we do it but there is much else to talk about like cutting money to countries who hate us, getting our own oil, if you want to talk about medicare then state how obamacare will kill it.
what you think the left mention open borders, homosexual teaching in schools, cutting the military? No they don’t
politics is a game
you talk about the Ryan plan and back it up then you won’t be implementing anything as you won’t get elected.
A soon as you mention it the people will turn away from you , and the left will say the nasty right will cut your medicare and then they get votes
this has been proven twice in two weeks and we lost twice
I'm not going to do that. Too many men far better than I have fought, suffered, bled and died to give me my vote, so I'm not going to throw it away by not voting. Consequently, I'm eventually going to have to vote for somebody with whom I may not see eye to eye on 100% of the issues. C&T is a pretty serious one, but if he's walked back his support, and actively promotes deregulation, reigning in the EPA, etc. I'd happily overlook the fact that he once supported something I disagree with.