March 10, 2005


The man who Democrats hope can take that Hill: The edgy and brash Rahm Emanuel is becoming a leading voice for the party on policy. (Linda Feldmann and David T. Cook, 3/11/05, CS Monitor)

Emanuel has also become a lead spokesman for the party on issues, including Social Security, and with his background in finance, has strong views on the issue of saving for retirement.

He believes that for the Democrats to retake the House, they have to become a party of reform - both on ethics and on policy. "I think we should be the party of tax reform, massive tax reform, because the code is skewed to those who have lawyers, accountants, and people who can think of schemes," he says. "I know of no middle-class family that sets up a shelter in Bermuda to pay for college education for the kids."

Indeed, the President should call Mr. Emanuel in and say he wants to pass two of his ideas:
Emanuel Makes Saving for Retirement Easier with the “Direct Deposit Savings Act of 2005” (Office of U.S. Representative Rahm Emanuel (D-IL))
This week, U.S. Representative Rahm Emanuel (D-IL) introduced the Direct Deposit Savings Act of 2005, legislation that makes retirement savings easier by allowing taxpayers to deposit some or all of their Federal income tax refund directly into personal savings or Individual Retirement Accounts.

“I want to make it easy for Americans to invest in their futures,” said Emanuel. “This legislation will give all taxpayers a ‘one-click’ way to save. By simply checking a box, or clicking a mouse, taxpayers will be able to automatically direct some or all of their Federal tax return into an IRA where their hard earned money can grow, tax-deferred, until retirement.”

Every year, approximately 100 million people receive a Federal income tax refund. And the average return is nearly $2,000 per person. The Direct Deposit Savings Act of 2005 will require the Internal Revenue Service to allow any taxpayer to check a box on their electronic or paper Federal income tax form and transfer their refund, in whole or in part into one or more savings accounts or IRAs. This bill will make it possible for Americans to save nearly $200 billion a year.
Frist Hints of Sacrifices In Social Security Changes (Mike Allen, January 17, 2005, Washington Post)

Rep. Rahm Emanuel (Ill.), chairman of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, said on NBC that Democrats "believe in individual retirement plans as a supplement to Social Security," whereas Republicans "believe in individual retirement plans as a way to supplant Social Security."

Posted by Orrin Judd at March 10, 2005 7:04 PM

This is embarassing. The only area in which the Democrats can take on the Republicans is economic policy, but even here the demands of their contributors rather than their voters prevail. They are going the way of the Whigs.

Posted by: Bart at March 11, 2005 8:31 AM