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Mitt Romney On Social Security

Mitt Romney Supports Privatizing Social Security

Mitt Romney Wrote That Individual Accounts, Paid By The Borrowing Of Treasuries Sales, Was An Option To Solve Social Security. In his book “No Apology” Mitt Romney wrote “Individual retirement accounts offer a fourth option, one that would allow today’s wage earners to direct a portion of their Social Security tax to a private account rather than go entirely to pay the benefits of current retirees, as is the case today. The federal government would make up for its lost Social Security revenue by borrowing that amount through the sale of treasuries, just as it currently does for the rest of its deficits. Owners of these individual accounts would invest in a combination of stocks and bonds and—presuming these investments paid a higher rate of return than the new treasuries—the return on these investments would boost the payments to seniors. I also like the fact the individual retirement accounts would encourage more Americans to invest in the private sector that powers our economy. [“No Apology” 2011 Pg. 175-176]

Mitt Romney Wrote That The 2008 Market Crash Was Not “…Proof Of The Folly Or Danger Of Individual Accounts.” In his book “No Apology” Mitt Romney wrote “The 2008 stock market collapse is proof, however, that we can’t always count on positive returns from these investments. But it is not, as some critics claim, proof of the folly and danger of individual accounts. It is evidence that such a system would have to be phased in over time so that the market’s inevitable ups and downs—by far more ups than downs over a lifetime—do not endanger a secure retirement. But given the volatility of investment values that we have just experienced, I would prefer that individual accounts were added to Social Security, not diverted from it, and that they were voluntary. Former commerce secretary Pete Peterson has proposed that such individual accounts be mandatory, pointing out that voluntary savings programs like 401(k)s and IRAs tend to be underutilized. But if the accounts were linked with Social Security, set at 1 percent of wages as the annual contribution, and required an annual “opt-out” by both the individual and his or her spouse to be inoperative, I believe they could be effective, while at the same time giving taxpayers personal choice. One or a combination of these last three options will put Social Security on track to sustainably meet its obligations to current and future retirees, and they will keep us from raising taxes that would stifle our economy and encumber future generations.” [“No Apology” 2011 Pg. 175-176]

Romney Supported Bush Plan To Create Private Social Security Accounts. At a Fox News Debate Romney stated, “…the president said let’s have private accounts and take that surplus money that’s being gathered now in Social Security and put that into private accounts. That works.” [Fox News Debate, 10/21/07]

Romney Called Private Social Security Accounts “A Big Plus.” According to the Union Leader, “Republican Mitt Romney yesterday praised the notion of personal accounts for Social Security recipients, a key aspect of the Social Security reform plan of President Bush that never made it out of Congress. Romney said it would be a good idea to use the Social Security trust fund to allow personal accounts, which could earn higher rates of return for beneficiaries. ‘Personal accounts would be a big plus,’ Romney said at the New Hampshire Institute of Art yesterday afternoon.” [Union Leader, 6/7/07]


Mitt Romney Supports Raising The Social Security Retirement Age

Romney Supported Raising The Retirement Age And Creating Private Investment Accounts. The Boston Globe reported that “Romney is supportive of raising the retirement age, as well as allowing workers to direct a portion of their paycheck into individual investment accounts – rather than shipping it to the government to pay benefits for current retirees. ‘Increasing the retirement age by even one or two years would help get the system closer to sustainability,’ Romney writes in his book ‘No Apology,’ as he outlines several options he thinks could put Social Security on sounder financial footing. ‘Most people I know in their ‘60s want to keep working; they’re simply happier when they do.’” [The Boston Globe, 4/11/11 ]

Romney Supported Raising The Retirement Age For Social Security. At a debate Romney stated, “Well, number one, you can have personal accounts where people can invest in something that does better than government bonds — with some portion of their Social Security. Number two, you can say we’re going to have the initial benefit calculations for wealthier Americans calculated based on the Consumer Price Index rather than the wage index. That saves almost two-thirds of the shortfall. And then number three, you can change the retirement age.” [Florida Atlantic Debate, 1/24/08]

Romney Said He Would Not Raise Social Security Taxes But He Saw Merit In Raising The Retirement Age Or Cutting Benefits. According to the Associated Press, “‘I’m not going to support a tax increase for Social Security,’ added Mitt Romney, a third contender. The former Massachusetts governor said he saw some merit in raising the retirement age and in scaling back the benefits promised future retirees as part of a rescue plan for the government-run retirement program.” [Associated Press, 10/18/07]