Perry releases op-ed on Social Security, honesty
September 12th, 2011
04:20 PM ET
3 years ago

Perry releases op-ed on Social Security, honesty

Washington (CNN) - Presidential hopeful Rick Perry set the stage for Monday's "Tea Party Republican Debate" by releasing an opinion-editorial that broadly defines his position on social security.

"We must have a frank, honest national conversation about fixing Social Security to protect benefits for those at or near retirement while keeping faith with younger generations, who are being asked to pay," stated the USA Today op-ed.

Perry, the governor of Texas, has made waves in the past for calling Social Security a "Ponzi scheme." Perry doubled down on at Wednesday's Reagan Library debate, repeating his "Ponzi scheme" charge while also calling Social Security a "failure."

In response, a number of other GOP hopefuls made statements supporting the program. Mitt Romney, the former governor of Massachusetts, called his position "reckless" and "wrong."

The op-ed does not use the word "Ponzi scheme," but with Perry trying to stress the honesty needed to address Social Security, the words "frank" (three times) and "honest" (four times) are peppered throughout the piece.

"The first step to fixing a problem is honestly admitting there is a problem," the op-ed stated. "America's goal must be to fix Social Security by making it more financially sound and sustainable for the long term. But Americans deserve a frank and honest discussion of the dire financial challenges facing the nearly 80-year-old program."

Perry, along with seven other GOP hopefuls, will be on stage tonight at CNN's "Tea Party Republican Debate."

soundoff (55 Responses)
  1. Jilli

    What a steaming pile of hooey. He realizes that the tough guy talk may have canned his chances of election and he's trying to dig himself out. Problem is there's abundant video and there's his books clearly spelling out his distain for social security. The horse has left the barn cowboy...it's too late to close the gate.

    September 12, 2011 05:52 pm at 5:52 pm |
  2. Marie MD

    I stopped ready after "honesty" from the secessionist.

    September 12, 2011 05:59 pm at 5:59 pm |
  3. T'sah from Virginia

    Perry’s SS “Ponzi Scheme” is now a dream
    He now wants to “fix it” instead of “dissing it”
    "The first step to fixing…”] it, is admitting it’s
    a “Ponzi Scheme” that’s a little extreme!!!

    The RIGHT is playing on the minds of Americans who they know suffer from “short-term memory.” All of this “flip-flopping” will be forgotten in another month or two!!! I will NOT forget…

    Obama/Biden 2012!!

    September 12, 2011 06:00 pm at 6:00 pm |
  4. Mikey

    @ chew – You are frigheningly misinformed. Too many errors in your post to address at once, but I'll name three:

    "42% of Americans are unemployed or underemployed" – not even close
    "Most people don't pay social security tax" – most people DO pay into SS, and if you don't, you can't collect retirement benefits
    "The 2 percentage point tax holiday in 2011 and schedule to expand in 2012.. more smoke and mirrors.. the GENERAL fund is picking up the slack" – The purpose of the tax holiday is not to help SS, but to put spending into the economy. We have an economy that is driven 70% by consumer spending. Spending is good for business, who then can hire people, who then can spend more so business can make more money and hire more people.

    The problem with "supply side" economics is that we have a "demand side" economy.

    September 12, 2011 06:01 pm at 6:01 pm |
  5. EatRunDive

    But when Bush wanted to privatize SS, Perry thought it was a great idea!

    September 12, 2011 06:04 pm at 6:04 pm |
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