I wonder if these guys will be able to walk next week.
WASHINGTON (AP) – A second Senate Democrat said Friday he was open to President Bush’s idea of letting people divert some of their Social Security taxes to personal retirement accounts as Republican Party leaders tried to allay re-election fears among wavering GOP lawmakers.
Sen. Tom Carper, D-Del., said any plan should be bipartisan, in part to give lawmakers from both parties political cover for supporting major changes to such the popular retirement program.
“I don’t believe that we should rule out the accounts,” Carper said Friday in an interview. “We have a very low savings rate in this country and clearly need to find ways to stimulate savings, and I think we should be open to a wide range of ideas and not dismiss them out of hand.”
Sen. Ben Nelson, D-Neb., also has said he is open to discussing the private accounts, saying he wants to see details.
No Senate Democrat has signed onto a Social Security bill, and most say they are absolutely opposed to taking money from the traditional Social Security system to create these accounts. Several Democrats do like the idea of creating personal accounts on top of regular Social Security benefits.
In the House, Democratic Rep. Allen Boyd of Florida is backing a Social Security bill.
There are at least a few brave Democrats who think that allowing people to control their money instead of having the government do it is not such a bad idea. This must infuriate the leadership who has bragged they have unanimity on this one and threatened any Dem who strayed off message.
Having watched this same routine numerous times, it is simple to make a fairly accurate prediction:
Privatization (of some degree) is done. Enough Dems will cross over that the Dem leadership will (again) look like the extremist obstructionists they are. They will whine and complain, then right before the vote they will cave, only to pick up the whining a year later. (see also Iraq, the Patriot Act et al) This will piss of even more people who will vote Republican in 4 years.
Before you comment, remember, history is on my side.