Santorum blames 'abortion culture' for problems with Social Security
March 29th, 2011
08:42 PM ET
4 years ago

Santorum blames 'abortion culture' for problems with Social Security

(CNN) - Potential 2012 presidential candidate Rick Santorum said the "abortion culture" in America is to blame for the failing Social Security system.

In an interview with WEZS Radio in Laconia, New Hampshire, Tuesday, the former Republican Pennsylvania senator said abortion rates are influencing the number of children born in the United States and there are therefore not enough children to support the program long-term.

"The Social Security system in my opinion is a flawed design, period. But having said that, the design would work a lot better if we had stable demographic trends," Santorum said. "A third of all the young people in America are not in America today because of abortion."

Santorum, an outspoken opponent of abortion, made the comments in response to a caller who said abortion rates are to blame for the problems with Social Security and Medicare.

"We have seven children so we're doing our part to fund the Social Security system," Santorum said. "I want children to be living in America and contributing. America's greatest resource is our people and we're denying America what it needs, which is more Americans."

Santorum was in New Hampshire, the first-in-the-nation primary state Tuesday to meet with voters and headline a GOP dinner in Concord.


Filed under: 2012 • New Hampshire • Rick Santorum
soundoff (330 Responses)
  1. Rev Mkell,

    He wrote that out with his little crayons? From what he seems to say most every woman in the US has had a few abortions! What color is the sky on his world?

    March 29, 2011 10:52 pm at 10:52 pm |
  2. USNMAN66

    Really??? I just remembered why he lost his 2008 senate race! I am a active duty Naval Officer, so I am used to working with different kinds people, but this comment is ridiculous. Trust me this latest Santorum rantI on the woes of America is ignorant at best. I don't know how I will vote in 2012, but If he is the republican nominee I am going vote for the intelligent candidate (Mr. Obama). Listen up hard core Republicans, if you want to loose again keep entertaining this dunce.

    March 29, 2011 10:55 pm at 10:55 pm |
  3. Lisa Mitchell

    "A third of all the young people in America are not in America today because of abortion."

    Great another idiot in the GOP ring talking in circles! American population is EXPLODING, and has been for decades! What is he talking about? The population explosion has caused the Welfare state as these youngsters grow up only to reproduce again. Why, because education funding is consistantly reduced or cut completely, there are no jobs, and the republicans are not trying to create them, only "blaming" others for the problem, and welfare continues to be the only "gaurenteed" income for those with no motivation and or resources to become productive citizens. If this fool is really able to convince everyone that abortion is the cause of the social security crisis, we are i a sad.....sad......place in America.

    March 29, 2011 10:55 pm at 10:55 pm |
  4. Philosoraptor

    "We have seven children so we're doing our part to fund the Social Security system,"

    You are also doing your part to contribute to overpopulation, starvation, pollution and dumbing-down of the world. Congratulations.

    March 29, 2011 10:56 pm at 10:56 pm |
  5. Eric

    It's sad but true. Economic growth itself is nothing but a population ponzi scheme. Social Security included. The biggest driver for economic growth is not for you to become Bill Gates, but to have 10 Bill Gates's. If not your kids, well then your kids kids, and so on into infinity.

    March 29, 2011 10:57 pm at 10:57 pm |
  6. Mike Cohen

    Google The 1966 Decree and Nicolae Ceausescu. He also thought that abortion was reducing his countries numbers and cracked down on abortion. More unwanted babies were born and were warehoused in orphanages. Crime also rose. Unwanted babies don't exactly grow up to be model citizens. Abortion is ugly, but the alternative is horrific.

    March 29, 2011 10:57 pm at 10:57 pm |
  7. Doug C.

    That's assuming that those extra 1/3 of America youths could find jobs to pay into SS. I'm sure cash strapped states would love to be hiring more teachers from their empty coffers to put the extra youths through school. Altogether pretty fuzzy thinking by Sen. Santorum. But I remember the last candidate to have trouble w/ 'Fuzzy Math'. I think he played a major role in bankrupted the country.

    March 29, 2011 10:58 pm at 10:58 pm |
  8. T'sah from Virginia

    OMG – Santorum was gone for a few days and this is what he comes back with??????

    ["A third of all the young people in America are not in America today because of abortion."]

    WTF??? And the RIGHT is always complaining about we’re going to run out of land if we keep allowing immigrants (illegal, that is) in this country. Maybe we should pass the DREAM ACT or allow the immigrants that are here to become citizens so that they can pay into the system and pay TAXES!!! That would have been much better than blaming it on “LACK OF BABIES” due to abortion!!! Jeez!

    March 29, 2011 10:59 pm at 10:59 pm |
  9. Dan

    "A third of all the young people in America are not in America today because of abortion."

    This is possibly the dumbest sentence uttered by a potential presidential candidate in recent memory.

    Really, Rick? If people just had more kids, we'd be okay? Thanks for polluting the earth with seven kids who will likely grow up to be as dimwitted and eager to procreate as you are. Guess the movie "Idiocracy" wasn't far off the mark...

    March 29, 2011 10:59 pm at 10:59 pm |
  10. Beadles

    Santorum, you are truly an idiot. The declining birth rate is due to a number of factors – not the least of which is that many people have limited the number of children they will have (sterilization, contraception, and, yes, abortions.) Many abortions are performed on women of limited means who will not be able to provide for the child in the manner in which you apparently believe all children are raised. While we need to fix social security, outlawing abortion will not do it.

    March 29, 2011 10:59 pm at 10:59 pm |
  11. Richard Ponting

    Has he lost his mind? Republicans are using outlandish tactics make points and are showing both a lack of courage and veracity. Did you see Newts claim that we are our children are in danger of being radical islamists? I wonder what having unwanted children does to the social service network in our country. These desperate people have no place in leadership because they value having power over understanding service

    March 29, 2011 10:59 pm at 10:59 pm |
  12. Ron

    Wow, now that is what I call a stretch....these guys will grab at anything that they think will fly with their perceived supporters. Next it will be that the earth is flat and that people without health insurance don't deserve to live....oh they already think that.

    March 29, 2011 10:59 pm at 10:59 pm |
  13. Jack

    I think abortion is a personal decision. I do not want the government to tell us what to do. Isn't that the Republican moto? Plus if we had all these added people how are we, as a world going to feed all these people? The world CANNOT support 10 Billion people....well, maybe it can if we all start eating bugs.

    March 29, 2011 10:59 pm at 10:59 pm |
  14. Bill

    Too bad Rick Santorum's mother didn't abort him when she had the chance.

    March 29, 2011 11:00 pm at 11:00 pm |
  15. Sheila

    Sure, Rick. Except 73% of women who have abortions live below the poverty line. That's the main reason most have abortions in the first place. That's not going to contribute a lot to social security.

    March 29, 2011 11:00 pm at 11:00 pm |
  16. GonzoinHouston

    That has got to be one of the dumbest things I have ever heard an adult American say in public. If it's just a matter of having more workers paying into the system, I can give you about 10 million of them overnight; it's called immigration reform.

    For the hardcore, abortion really isn't the issue. The issue is sex. Specifically extra-marital sex by young people, like the children of abortion opponents. These people want to make sex as dangerous and fraught with unknowns as possible as a way to defeat young hormones. This has never worked before, and it will never work in the future. If they were truly out to reduce the need for abortion, they would be leading the effort to provide education and contraception, which have actually been proven to work. But instead, they will devote all the efforts to enforce the tenets of their religion upon the rest.

    March 29, 2011 11:01 pm at 11:01 pm |
  17. sed81650

    What a typical comment from Santorum. That is a ridiculous statement. He can blame birth control but not abortion. Maybe his wife was born to be a baby machine but there are a lot of women who do not want to be that. More power to the Santorum's for having loads of kids but the majority of people do not want large families. Stop blaming it on something you do not agree with.

    March 29, 2011 11:03 pm at 11:03 pm |
  18. chad

    Pretty twisted logic considering the population of the US has increased exponentially. And by the way, Social Security is solvent through at least 2030 and adds nothing to the deficit.

    March 29, 2011 11:04 pm at 11:04 pm |
  19. Hawk

    By that logic, shouldn't we set up a quota on the minimum number of children each woman should have? After all, that would make for *much* more stable demographic trends.

    March 29, 2011 11:06 pm at 11:06 pm |
  20. MSG

    So, abortion can be blamed for social securities ills but it can't be lauded for the large reduction in crime we saw in the early 1990's some 17 years after it was legalized in all 50 states? Even though the evidence shows that most of the crime reduction was in the 17-25 year old demographic, which in 1990 would've been the generation who was first to come from a post abortion America? And the five states that allowed legal abortion 3 years earlier saw their crime rates fall 3 years prior to the rest of the nation? But we can blame it for social security's faults. Seems to me that you can't have it both ways. If abortion is to blame for social security falling short, then it is also to be applauded for reducing crime. Apparently more un-wanted American children may keep the social security coffers full but they also cut short more lives. Seems Santorum isn't pro-life at all but pro-tax revenues.

    March 29, 2011 11:07 pm at 11:07 pm |
  21. from toronto

    it's been proven many times in many cultures that an education is what allows women to have less children, or decide not to go through with a pregnancy. What planet does this guy live on? Abortion and the wish of some women to NOT have a child is as old as mankind. Why do some politicians in the US persist in flogging this dead issue? It would be nice to think that every child is a wanted child, but it just doesn't work that way. Or maybe it does in this guys 'ivory tower' because that must be where he's living.

    March 29, 2011 11:08 pm at 11:08 pm |
  22. Amunaka

    Two words...man dog

    March 29, 2011 11:11 pm at 11:11 pm |
  23. GOP - the dumbing of America

    wow – you are an idiot. Please run

    March 29, 2011 11:11 pm at 11:11 pm |
  24. Ray Jackson, MS

    Typical republican/christian. You must all go forth and breed like dogs in heat. Never mind that the world is already over populated and over polluted. Oh and google Santorum and see what you get.

    March 29, 2011 11:11 pm at 11:11 pm |
  25. Anonymous

    Had this argument many years ago in my church. Reading the right wing sites, every aborted fetus would have grown up to be a high income, tax paying citizen. That alone would have eliminated any need to reform Social Security. When I mentioned that not all of them would grow up to be CEOs because generally mother. would have little to do with actually raising a child, and that many of them would grow up to be thieves, murders and rapists, they had little response to that. Like oh, I never thought of that. If the right wingers want to say that they don't want their tax dollars spent on abortions, then I should have the same right to say that I don't want to support a murderer in jail for the rest of their lives because a right winger or religious freak was against publicly funded abortion. As much as the repubs look a dollars, it costs 1K for an abortion vs. 30K per year for maybe 50 years for prison costs, not to mention the costs of 0-17 years. Lets have a binding vote on how our taxes are spent. All in favor of public funding of abortions for women who want an abortion but can't afford it vote that their tax dollars cannot be use to support the kids after they are born. The ones who vote to not use tax funds for abortion will have to pay the cost for supporting these kids, through welfare, prison, and be responsible for paying any damages for their victims. I think that will change a lot of right wing wing minds. They are all for proclaiming that there are certain things they don't want their taxes spent on. I can think of many things that I don't think my tax money or tax breaks should be spent on. Bringing an unwanted child into this world is one of them.

    March 29, 2011 11:12 pm at 11:12 pm |
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