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Steve Forbes on Social Security

2000 Republican Primary Candidate for President


Endorsed increased retirement age; then attacked Bush for it

When the first debate in 1999 was scheduled in Manchester, New Hampshire, one reporter characterized it as "Get-the-Governor" night. Forbes attacked Bush for too small a tax cut and for supporting gradually increasing the age which retirees could receive their maximum Social Security benefits. Bush responded by reading an editorial by Forbes endorsing such an increase.
Source: Courage and Consequence, by Karl Rove, p.139 , Mar 9, 2010

Raising retirement age betrays promise to American retirees

The retirement age has already been raised from 65 to 67. That’s a betrayal. Now what are they going to raise it to? 70? 75? That’s not fair to the people. They were made a promise, and it should be kept. We should have a real debate on getting a new system, where we take it out of the hands of Washington politicians. And if you want to retire at 65, or 85, you can. Put it in your hands. Have your Social Security taxes, the vast majority, go to your own retirement account
Source: New Hampshire GOP Debates , Dec 3, 1999

Details of Personal Retirement Accounts

Source: “A New Birth of Freedom,” p. 107-8 , Nov 9, 1999

Investing Trust Fund in stocks is a government power grab

There are plenty of misguided ideas out there. Some want government bureaucrats to invest your money in the stock market without your having any say whatsoever. But a government takeover of the stock market is not the way to save Social Security. In fact, it’s the most blatant big government power grab since the Clinton health care plan of 1994, which would have forced all of us into government-run HMOs. So that’s a non-starter.
Source: “A New Birth of Freedom,” p. 101 , Nov 9, 1999

5 step plan: Lockbox, PRA’s, start now

    Five steps to saving Social Security:
  1. We must fully protect the current Social Security system for those on it and those going on it in the next 10 to 15 years
  2. Stop taxing senior’s benefits and end the Social Security earnings penalty
  3. Use the Social Security surplus to help phase in a new Social Security system of personal retirement accounts for younger workers
  4. Stop Washington from raiding the Trust Fund by taking it off-budget
  5. Start right away, while we still have time.
    Source: “A New Birth of Freedom,” p. 103 , Nov 9, 1999

    Stop taxing seniors’ benefits & income

    Up to 85% of the benefits seniors from Social Security can be taxed. If seniors want to continue working to earn additional income, their Social Security benefits may be reduced dramatically. Why are we letting Washington tax the very benefits seniors have worked a lifetime to accumulate? It’s crazy. More than that, it’s immoral. Such taxes should be abolished. It’s time we started honoring and valuing the enormous contribution seniors make to our families, our communities, and our economy.
    Source: “A New Birth of Freedom,” p. 104 , Nov 9, 1999

    Use surplus to fund personal retirement accounts

    Forbes wants changes in Social Security, with any surplus used to start a new system of personal savings accounts, or personal retirement accounts. He wants to take money in the Social Security trust fund “off-budget” so that Congress could not use it for any other purpose. Forbes also advocates greater use of medical savings accounts that would allow people to set money aside for future care.
    Source: Associated Press , Aug 13, 1999

    Take Trust Fund off-budget

    Forbes will take the Social Security Trust Fund off-budget to stop politicians from wasting your money. He will veto tax increases and benefits cuts.
    Source: forbes2000.com , Jul 2, 1999

    Young taxpayers can invest in Personal Retirement Accounts

    As President, Forbes will protect the current system for those on it and those going on it in the next 10 to 15 years. That means no tax increases and no benefit cuts. Steve will also phase in a new system in which young people would be free to choose to invest their payroll taxes in their own Personal Retirement Account, similar to an IRA or a 401(k) plan. This will allow you to take your retirement security out of the hands of the Washington politicians, and invest in the real American economy.
    Source: www.forbes2000.com “Economic Security” , May 21, 1999

    Supports individuals privately investing 75% of SSI taxes

    [Forbes outlined] his plan to rescue Social Security funds from politicians “who want to put their paws on it.” Forbes evoked the same bears-to-honey imagery he used [earlier]. Americans, he said, should be able to invest up to three-fourths of their Social Security taxes in private accounts, out of the reach of politicians in Congress. “We should show some compassion,” he said. “Don’t tempt these creatures.”
    Source: Speech to Des Moines (IA) Chamber of Commerce , Jun 12, 1998

    • Click here for 2 older quotations from Steve Forbes on Social Security.
    • Click here for definitions & background information on Social Security.
    • Click here for VoteMatch responses by Steve Forbes.
    • Click here for AmericansElect.org quiz by Steve Forbes.
    Other candidates on Social Security: Steve Forbes on other issues:
    Former Presidents:
    George W. Bush (R,2001-2009)
    Bill Clinton (D,1993-2001)
    George Bush Sr. (R,1989-1993)
    Ronald Reagan (R,1981-1989)
    Jimmy Carter (D,1977-1981)
    Gerald Ford (R,1974-1977)
    Richard Nixon (R,1969-1974)
    Lyndon Johnson (D,1963-1969)
    John F. Kennedy (D,1961-1963)

    Former Contenders:
    V.P.Al Gore
    Pat Buchanan
    V.P.Dick Cheney
    Sen.Bob Dole
    Ralph Nader
    Gov.Sarah Palin

    Political Thinkers:
    Noam Chomsky
    Milton Friedman
    Arianna Huffington
    Rush Limbaugh
    Tea Party
    Ayn Rand
    Secy.Robert Reich
    Donald Trump
    Gov.Jesse Ventura
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    Energy/Oil
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    Govt. Reform
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    Infrastructure/Technology
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    Page last updated: Mar 14, 2014