Gary Johnson on Social Security
Libertarian presidential nominee; former Republican NM Governor
Raise the retirement age to 70 or 72
One last issue that needs a dose of reality is our country's approach to Social Security and other entitlement programs. I've been on the record about this problem for years. As ABC News noted in 2010:
"Citing a story in USA Today which reported that a
rash of retirements in 2009 is pushing Social Security to the brink, Johnson said the retirement age needs to be raised perhaps to 70 or 72. "This is the reality, we're broke," said Johnson. "We're broke."
That's STILL the reality.
Source: Seven Principles, by Gary Johnson, p. 76
, Aug 1, 2012
A portion of Social Security ought to be privatized
Social Security really needs to be reformed. Medicaid probably needs to be capped when it comes to the states. Medicare, there needs to be some sort of means testing.
The [Social Security] retirement age needs to be raised. A portion of Social Security ought to be privatized, if not all. And there probably needs to be some means testing. It's a Ponzi scheme that's not sustainable.
Source: Seven Principles, by Gary Johnson, p.107
, Aug 1, 2012
Replace the payroll tax with FairTax
We need to get rid of payroll taxes. Look at it from the perspective of employers for a moment. When they want to hire someone, it costs more than just the wage they're paying. They have to pay payroll taxes, including for Social Security and Medicare.
That cost is about 10% of the wages they pay an employee. Remove that burden, and employers will be able to hire 10% more people. With an unemployment rate of 10%, why wouldn't we jump at this chance? The Fair-tax replaces employment and payroll taxes.
Source: Gary Johnson, "America moving again" in The Washington Times
, Feb 2, 2012
Raise the retirement age; plus means testing
Q: You told the Wall Street Journal last year that you support means testing for Social Security, for which you said you would raise the eligibility age.
A: I would cut Social Security by raising the retirement age and have common sense means testing
that's fair. I would scrap the entire federal tax system and replace it with the FairTax--a one-time consumption tax, with no more Medicare and unemployment payroll deductions--so we'd replace all federal taxes, abolishing the IRS.
Source: Interview by Scott Holleran on scottholleran.com blog
, Aug 21, 2011
Reform all entitlements, including Social Security
Q: You all support balancing the budget! But what entitlements would you go after?
Johnson: Medicaid and Medicare and reforming Social Security.
Bachmann: Obamacare, the largest entitlement and spending program in our country's history.
Gingrich: Also, fraud in Medicaid and Medicare are rampant. We should stop paying the crooks.
Cain: I would focus on major entitlement reform. This would focus on programs similar to Social Security.
Source: 2011 Republican primary debate on Twitter.com
, Jul 21, 2011
Open to personal accounts for Social Security
Governor Johnson's website lists some major entitlement reform proposals, including to fix Social Security by changing the escalator from being based on wage growth to inflation.
Governor Johnson has also said that he would be open to personal accounts for Social Security, as well as means testing the program.
Source: Club for Growth 2012 Presidential White Paper #9: Johnson
, Jul 21, 2011
Change escalator from wage-based to inflation-based
We must act now to:
Source: Presidential campaign website, garyjohnson2012.com, "Issues"
, May 2, 2011
- Balance the Budget. The math is simple: Federal spending must be cut not by millions or billions, but by trillions. And it must be done today. It's time to:
- Reassess the role of the federal government and identify
responsibilities that can be met more efficiently by the private sector.
- Enact Responsible Entitlement Reform: Most people in Washington seem to think that we can control spending and balance the budget without reforming Medicare, Medicaid and
Social Security. This is lunacy.
- Fix Social Security by changing the escalator from being based on wage growth to inflation. It's time for Social Security to reflect today's realities without breaking trust with those soon to retire.
Audit the Federal Reserve: We have a right to understand the process by which our currency is being created and managed.
- Get the Federal Reserve out of the business of propping up the stock market through quantitative easing.
Maintain long-term solvency of Social Security and Medicare.
Johnson adopted the National Governors Association position paper:
The IssueWith the first federal budget surplus in a generation and estimates of non-Social Security surpluses ranging from $750 billion to $1.9 trillion over the next decade, the issue is whether Congress and the President will agree to dedicate a portion of the projected surplus to tax cuts and, if so, what the impacts on states might be.
Tax issues raise several concerns for states.
- How much of the potential non-Social Security surplus should be dedicated to tax cuts and breaks?
- Absent any consensus on long-term legislation to ensure solvency of Social Security and Medicare, would major federal revenue losses for tax cuts risk shifting substantial entitlement burdens to states?
- How would federal tax changes affect state income taxes?
- What are key elements for states of any future major tax bill? In school construction? For retirement? For housing and economic development? For health care?
NGAís Position NGA opposes reductions from current discretionary spending levels or changes that could risk the long-term solvency of the nationís Social Security and Medicare systems. NGA supports provisions to ensure reduced barriers to state and local capital finance through tax-exempt bonds and to ensure maximum flexibility in setting and maintaining state retirement plans and programs.
Source: National Governors Association "Issues / Positions" 01-NGA16 on Aug 1, 2001
Page last updated: Oct 17, 2012