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Bob Casey on Social Security

Democratic Sr Senator (PA)

 


Stop these crazy proposals to put benefits in stock market

The candidates for US Senate in Pennsylvania are vowing to protect Social Security and Medicare but they have very different plans on how they'll go about it. "The first thing we should do is grow the economy," said Sen. Casey. "The second thing we should do is stop these crazy proposals to take Social Security benefits and put them in the stock market... invest them in a very high risk venture that makes no sense for Social Security."

Casey's opponent, Republican Tom Smith, has said he'd let a temporary reduction in the Social Security payroll tax expire in January. He wants taxpayers to be able to divert Social Security taxes into private investment accounts. Smith also says future Medicare beneficiaries should have the option of getting a government check to help buy private coverage.

Source: WMZ-TV 69-News on 2012 PA Senate debate , Oct 18, 2012

Privatization drains money from guaranteed benefits

Using Social Security taxes for private accounts
AARPOpposes
Bob CaseyOpposes
Rick Santorum Supports
Q: Will you support or oppose using Social Security taxes to fund private accounts?

A: I oppose Social Security privatization that drains away money from the Social Security system and would cut Social Security’s guaranteed benefits. The first step to protecting Social Security is to stop the assaults launched against Social Security by the privatization advocates. The next step is to get our fiscal house back in order and grow the economy. These two steps are necessary before considering any kind of changes in Social Security.

Source: 2006 AARP Senate candidate questionnaire , Sep 29, 2006

The crisis is privatization

SANTORUM: If you’re not for personal retirement accounts, how much are you going to raise their taxes? Or how much are you going to cut benefits?

CASEY: You need a step by step process. The best remedy for Social Security is economic growth.

Q: Something that’s approaching 70% of the budget, you’re going to grow your way out of it?

CASEY: That’s only part of it. We repeal that tax cut for the top 1%, that’s part of it.

Q: But we’re talking about Social Security.

CASEY: I don’t agree with your premise. I don’t think you’re talking about a crisis. The crisis is privatization.

SANTORUM: That’s no answer.

CASEY: I had a much better answer than yours, because your so-called guarantee is what The Philadelphia Inquirer called “snake oil.” His proposal is to privatize. His proposal drains a trillion dollars out of the trust fund. They’re draining it right now, to pay for those tax cuts for the wealthy that you supported. That’s the wrong policy for Social Security and for the economy.

Source: PA 2006 Senate Debate, Tim Russert moderator , Sep 3, 2006

Opposes Social Security privatization

Bob Casey opposes Social Security privatization that drains away money from the Social Security system and would cut Social Security’s guaranteed benefits. Bob Casey supports measures to help Americans save for retirement while not jeopardizing Social Security. He supports strengthening private pension plans and encouraging more Americans to save for their retirement. However, these plans must not divert payroll taxes or jeopardize Social Security’s guaranteed benefits.
Source: 2006 Senate campaign website, bobcaseyforpa.com, “Issues” , Feb 22, 2006

Voted NO on establishing reserve funds & pre-funding for Social Security.

Voting YES would:
  1. require that the Federal Old Age and Survivors Trust Fund be used only to finance retirement income of future beneficiaries;
  2. ensure that there is no change to benefits for individuals born before January 1, 1951
  3. provide participants with the benefits of savings and investment while permitting the pre-funding of at least some portion of future benefits; and
  4. ensure that the funds made available to finance such legislation do not exceed the amounts estimated to be actuarially available.

Proponents recommend voting YES because:

Perhaps the worst example of wasteful spending is when we take the taxes people pay for Social Security and, instead of saving them, we spend them on other things. Even worse than spending Social Security on other things is we do not count it as debt when we talk about the deficit every year. So using the Social Security money is actually a way to hide even more wasteful spending without counting it as debt. This Amendment would change that.

Opponents recommend voting NO because:

This amendment has a fatal flaw. It leaves the door open for private Social Security accounts by providing participants with the option of "pre-funding of at least some portion of future benefits."

Make no mistake about it, this is a stalking-horse for Social Security. It looks good on the surface, but this is an amendment to privatize Social Security.
Reference: Bill S.Amdt.489 on S.Con.Res.21 ; vote number 2007-089 on Mar 22, 2007

Rated 96% by ARA, indicating a pro-Trust Fund stance.

Casey scores 96% Alliance for Retired Americans

Scoring system for 2014: Ranges from 0% (supports privatization and other market-based reforms) to 100% (supports keeping federal control over Trust Fund and Social Security system).

About ARA (from their website, www.RetiredAmericans.org):

The Alliance for Retired Americans is a nationwide organization, founded in May 2001, with now over 4.2 million members working together to make their voices heard in the laws, policies, politics, and institutions that shape our lives. The mission of the Alliance for Retired Americans is to ensure social and economic justice and full civil rights for all citizens so that they may enjoy lives of dignity, personal and family fulfillment and security.

Source: ARA lifetime rating on incumbents of 113th Congress 14_ARA on Jan 1, 2013

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