We need to provide long-term solvency for Social Security, but unlike my opponent, I will never advocate abolishing Social Security as "un-American", nor will I advocate privatizing it. Draining funds out of the Social Security Trust Fund in order to pay for so-called "private accounts" as President Bush has called for, will only make the long-term solvency problem worse. So what should be done? First of all, we need to restore a sense of fiscal discipline to the federal government because the huge deficits we are running threaten the Social Security Trust Fund. The Bush Administration's reckless fiscal policies have made it impossible to restore what Vice President Gore once proposed as a "lock box" to keep Social Security off limits for masking the federal deficit, but we can regain some of that lost ground with pay-as-you-go rules for managing federal spending. We should also enact the single-subject rule in Congress like what we have in the Colorado Legislature. This give the Representatives the ability to see exactly what they are voting for or against and helps to create transparency in the legislative process.
We can also insist on tax reform that helps middle income families but repeals reckless tax breaks for big oil and tax shelters for the super rich. I am also a supporter of the constitutional line item veto and earmark reform legislation that will limit Congressional pork-barrel spending. Restoring fiscal sanity to the federal budget is probably the best policy we can pursue to protect Social Security. Congress should also encourage retirement savings and pension security so that fewer Americans are left relying exclusively on Social Security in their old age, but these efforts will not come easy so long as we are spending $1.9 billion a week in Iraq. A combination of leadership in bringing the war to a close, deficit reduction, spending caps, and balanced tax reform are the basic foundation for saving Social Security for future generations. In addition, I have proposed that President Bush and the new Congress convene a "Solvency Summit" including members of the Blue Ribbon Commission on Social Security to hammer out a bipartisan package that both Republicans and Democrats can support.