Campaign 2010

Feb 10, 2005

President Bush Pitches Social Security Privatization in NC…

DCCC Press

Feb 10, 2005

President Bush Pitches Social Security Privatization in NC...

Where do Reps. Hayes, Taylor stand?

President Bush visits Raleigh today to attempt to sell his Social Security privatization plan and GOP Reps. Robin Hayes and Charlie Taylor are in the hot seat.

Both Hayes and Taylor have tried to have it both ways on Social Security: they've claimed to oppose plans to privatize and cut Social Security benefits, but have backed private accounts that will require trillions in new debt and slashing benefits by up to 45 percent.

"Reps. Hayes and Taylor can't claim to be opposed to Social Security privatization while backing a plan that diverts trillions from the Social Security trust fund into the stock market and slashes guaranteed benefits," said DCCC Chairman Rahm Emanuel (IL). "With the President in North Carolina, it's time for Reps. Hayes and Taylor to tell their constituents where they truly stand on privatizing Social Security."

FLIP... Taylor told the National Taxpayers Union in 2004 that he SUPPORTED privatizing Social Security. Taylor responded:

"I will work and vote for a system of Social Security Choice that will allow younger workers to have the choice of investing much of their Social Security taxes in regulated individual retirement accounts. Current retirees and those nearing retirement would not have any change in their Social Security benefits. Social Security Choice will give younger workers ownership of their Social Security accounts, with higher rates of return and better benefits than are possible under the current system." [ntu.org]

FLOP... But in late 2004, Taylor told the Asheville Citizen-Times a different story.

"U.S. Rep. Charles Taylor, a Brevard Republican representing Western North Carolina, said while he doesn't support Social Security privatization, he believes the system needs work." [Asheville Citizen-Times, 12/02/04]

FLIP... Hayes Told the AARP He Will Oppose Any Plan to Privatize.

"I joined with 415 other members of the House in calling for the strengthening of Social Security without raising payroll taxes, without reducing benefits and without raising the retirement age. I will oppose any plan to privatize Social Security. [AARP, 2002 Candidate Questionnaire]

FLOP... But Hayes Voted to Support Bush's Push for Social Security Privatization.

In 2001, Hayes helped the U.S. House of Representatives take the first step towards a privatized Social Security plan by voting against a bill that would have stopped the White House from implementing the Social Security privatization plan being developed by President Bush's Social Security Commission. The Bush Commission was stacked to include only proponents of privatization -- and ultimately recommended three possible plans, all of which include some privatization of Social Security. Privatizing Social Security would require an increase in Social Security taxes or a return to the days of deficit spending, or a reduction in guaranteed benefits to pay for transition cost in the trillions. Max Richman, executive vice president of the National Committee to Preserve Social Security and Medicare, said of the Commission's proposals, "Each of the proposals put forward by the commission require specific, massive cuts in defined benefits -- even for those who do not opt for the voluntary accounts." [USA Today, 5/15/01; Dallas Morning News, 5/7/01; HR 2590, vote #273, 7/25/01, Total: 188-238; National Committee to Preserve Social Security & Medicare press release, 12/11/01; CQ Bill Watch; USA Today, 5/2/01; Associated Press, 6/11/2001, Report of President's Commission on Social Security, 12/01; Congressional Record, 7/25/01]