Sunday, March 13, 2016

Social Security, Economics and Presidential Politics

For the last couple of decades politicians have been battling over Social Security.  Democrats love it; most of the public loves it, but many Republicans hate it.  In the last GOP debate Donald Trump separated himself from Marco Rubio who told us that Social Security was going to go broke and that we would have to cut benefits for people his age who would be retiring in the more distant future.  Rubio's position assures him that he wont lose the votes of those collecting benefits today or in the near future.  That position has another favorable outcome.  Younger people, will believe that Social Security will not be there for them when they retire. That will make it easier for Republicans to attack Social Security in the future.  Its the age old strategy of divide and conquer.  Cruz agreed with Rubio that Social Security is in trouble.  He wants to partially privatize Social Security by creating individual investment accounts for young people.  We got nothing new from Rubio or Cruz; they have taken well worn Republican positions on Social Security.  Trump's position of Social Security separates him from the GOP herd.

This article does two important things.  It provides valuable information about the finances of Social Security that most people do not understand.  It also explains why Trump has moved away from the GOP game plan on Social Security.  Trump has been very clever during his campaign.  He told Republicans in the South what they wanted to hear about social issues but he has taken positions on Social Security and Trade that will appeal to Democratic voters outside of the South.  He is preparing himself for the general election by taking away two of the big talking points that will be used by his Democratic opponent.  It will also help him in the GOP primaries in the Rust Belt.  Trump will be present himself as a Democrat outside of the South.  He understand why the GOP loses presidential elections.

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