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PORTSIDE  October 2010, Week 3

PORTSIDE October 2010, Week 3

Subject:

200+ Candidates Pledge No Cuts To Social Security

From:

Portside Moderator <[log in to unmask]>

Reply-To:

[log in to unmask]

Date:

Tue, 19 Oct 2010 23:59:37 -0400

Content-Type:

text/plain

Parts/Attachments:

Parts/Attachments

text/plain (93 lines)

Conway Leads 200+ Candidates In Demanding No Cuts To
Social Security

by Sam Stein

The Huffington Post

October 18, 2010
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/10/18/conway-leads-200-candidat_n_766133.html

Handed a plate full of difficult-to-sell -- if not
generally unpopular -- legislative items, Democrats have
chosen to campaign on process as much as policy, homing
in on topics like the financing of campaigns as opposed
to, say, health care of financial regulatory reform.

In the background has remained Social Security, a policy
on which the party not only earns the broad trust of the
voting public but also has the 2005 privatization debate
to serve as political guidance. The actual question of
whether or not to reform the entitlement program has
been formally pushed till after the election, when the
president's fiscal commission will offer its insights.
But at various points during the past few months,
Democratic leadership has tried to elevate the topic as
a campaign issue. Monday is one of those points.

In a campaign spearheaded by Kentucky Senate candidate
Jack Conway and organized with the Progressive Change
Campaign Committee, more than 200 Democratic candidates
for Congress have now formally signed a petition
opposing any cuts or adjustments of Social Security
benefits.

"With a Tea Party deep on the fringe, the way for
Democrats to win in 2010 is to have a spine -- and go on
offense," reads an email authored by Conway and sent out
to PCCC members Monday morning. "That's why today, I am
proud to announce with my friends at the Progressive
Change Campaign Committee that over 200 congressional
candidates and members of Congress are promising to
oppose any cuts to Social Security.

"We're saying no privatization, no raising the
retirement age, no messing with the best program for
seniors and workers in American history -- and no
mincing words about it."

There is a certain symbolism to the collaboration.
Conway is not the type of doctrinaire liberal that the
PCCC typically supports. On the debate over what to do
with the expiring Bush tax cuts, for instance, he and
the group find themselves on opposite ends.

But the strict notion of protecting Social Security has
been one of the few galvanizing policy platforms for
Democrats. And in addition to Conway, every non-
incumbent Senate candidate except two -- Chris Coons (D-
Del.) and Joe Sestak (D-Penn.) -- have signed the
petition. The absence of those two names, a PCCC
spokesman said, is owed to organizational, not
philosophical difficulties.

The wonder, indeed, is that a campaign like the one
Conway and the PCCC put together on Monday took so long
to materialize (it has been building for weeks). Despite
the continual insistence from Democratic leadership that
Social Security would be a top topic -- and that a harsh
spotlight would be placed Republican calls to privatize
the program -- the screws have been only marginally
tightened. More than that, Republicans who have called
for privatization if not full bore elimination of Social
Security have been allowed to either walk back their
comments or escape them with marginal consequence.

The full list of signatories can be read at the PCCC's
campaign-oriented website.
http://www.socialsecurityprotectors.com/

_____________________________________________

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to people on the left that will help them to
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