January 31, 2005


Congressional Republicans Agree To Launch Social Security Campaign (Mike Allen, January 31, 2005, Washington Post)

Congressional Republicans, after three months of internal debate, this weekend launched a months-long campaign to try to convince constituents that rewriting the Social Security law would be cheaper and less risky than leaving it alone, as the White House opened a campaign to pressure several Senate Democrats to support the changes.

The Republicans left an annual retreat in the Allegheny Mountains with a 104-page playbook titled "Saving Social Security," a deliberate echo of the language President Bill Clinton used to argue that the retirement system's trust fund should be built up in anticipation of the baby boomers' retirement.

The congressional Republicans' confidential plan was developed with the advice of pollsters, marketing experts and communication consultants, and was provided to The Washington Post by a Republican official. The blueprint urges lawmakers to promote the "personalization" of Social Security, suggesting ownership and control, rather than "privatization," which "connotes the total corporate takeover of Social Security." Democratic strategists said they intend to continue fighting the Republican plan by branding it privatization, and assert that depiction is already set in people's minds.

Can Democrats really win by arguing for Big Government and against the Private Sector?

Posted by Orrin Judd at January 31, 2005 8:40 AM

All the Republicans need to win on this issue is to get people to understand that the money in their personal/private SS account is truly their money, just like their 401k's. That when they die, it passes to their heirs & beneficiaries instead of disappearing back into the government's maw.

Once people get this idea into their heads, it doesn't matter whether it is called "private" or "personal".

Posted by: ray at January 31, 2005 10:43 AM