As our friends at “The Fix” note today:
The back and forth on the [Social Security] issue in Nevada is a microcosm of what Democrats hope will be a broader debate in races around the country about what to do next on Social Security.
To commemorate the 75th anniversary, which is tomorrow, of Social Security becoming law, the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee has released a scorecard documenting 13 Republican Senate candidates who have expressed support for some form of privatization of the retirement system…
…Social Security is always a potent political issue but especially so in midterm elections where older voters — to whom this issue is of critical importance — comprise a larger segment of the overall electorate. (Older voters always vote.)
President George W. Bush’s failure to pass a reform of the system played a role — how much of one can be debated — in the Democratic takeover of the House and Senate in 2006 and Democrats are hoping it will mitigate their expected losses in this midterm.
We have long included Social Security as an issue that would come back to bite Republican Senate candidate Ken Buck, and it looks like Democrats are planning on playing that angle as much as possible.
While it may have made sense for Buck to go after Social Security while trying to woo Tea Party support for a Republican Primary, it’s not helpful to have statements like these on the record in a General Election:
At a March forum, he drew hearty applause after calling Social Security “horrible, bad policy” and questioning whether the federal government should be involved in administering it.
“I don’t know whether it’s constitutional or not; it is certainly a horrible policy,” Buck said. “The idea that the federal government should be running health care or retirement or any of those programs is fundamentally against what I believe. And that is that the private sector runs programs like that far better.”
The ads write themselves: Vote for Ken Buck, and kiss Social Security goodbye! Anti-government conservatives may think this is great, but swing-voting senior citizens who rely on Social Security for their retirement? Not so much.