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  • Politics & Elections
    New Guide to GOP Presidential Candidates’ Positions on Social Security Unveiled PDF Print E-mail
    News Releases - Politics & Elections
    Written by Don Owens   
    Monday, 19 December 2011 16:33

    (Washington, DC)Today, Social Security Works unveiled a new guide which reveals that the top six Republican Presidential candidates agree: If they had their way, they would cut or do away with Social Security, America’s most successful insurance program. The guide shows that when these Republican Presidential candidates say we need to “save” Social Security, what they really mean is we need to end Social Security.

    “Iowa caucus-goers should know that the Republican candidates are out of touch on the issue of Social Security,” said Nancy Altman, co-director of Social Security Works.  “Tea Partiers, mainstream Republicans, Democrats, and Independents all overwhelmingly support Social Security, oppose benefit cuts, including opposing raising the retirement age, and oppose trading the program’s guaranteed retirement income for the gamble of the Wall Street ‘casino.’  In contrast, as the guide reveals, the Republican candidates favor raising the retirement age and partially privatizing the program.  They outrageously defame Social Security by calling this trust, which holds workers’ hard earned contributions, a Ponzi scheme, a fraud, or even, unconstitutional, notwithstanding that its constitutionality was upheld three-quarters of a century ago.”

    “The Republican candidates – all six of the front-runners – could not be more out of step with the American people!  Americans -- Democrats, Independents, and, yes, Republicans -- overwhelmingly support Social Security and oppose the kinds of radical cuts and changes the Republican candidates favor. They can’t afford to have their benefits cut   and they do not want Wall Street bankers and other campaign contributors to steal their and their children’s Social Security,” said Eric Kingson, co-chair of the Strengthen Social Security Campaign.

    Social Security provides benefits to nearly 600,000 Iowans, including more than 70,000 Iowa workers with disabilities.  With less than three weeks to go before the Iowa Caucuses, Social Security has a lot at stake on the caucus outcome.  The brief guide below includes such horrible gems as “fraud” and “privatization” language from Mitt Romney, Newt Gingrich, Ron Paul, Rick Perry, Michelle Bachmann, and Rick Santorum.

    Called Social Security A Fraud, Ponzi Scheme, or Unconstitutional

    Wants to Raise the Social Security Retirement Age

    Supports Some Form of Privatization

    MICHELE
    BACHMANN

    [Social Security] “is a tremendous fraud. no company could get away with this, they’d be thrown in jail if they ever tried to do what the federal government did with people’s Social Security money.”

    Fox News, February 17, 2010

    Voted to raise the Social Security retirement age to 70, which would cut benefits by up to 20 percent for new beneficiaries when fully phased in.

    –Voted Yes on Republican Study Committee Budget, Roll call Vote 275, April 15, 2011

    “But people that are younger than [10 years away from retirement], they need to have some options in their lives, so that going forward they can have an ownership of their own Social Security, their own retirement.”

    Fox News, February 17, 2010

    NEWT
    GINGRICH

    “it is a fraud and a lie the way that congress deals with Social Security.”

    Cain-Gingrich Debate, november 5, 2011

    No position stated.

    “any candidate who is not prepared to give younger americans the right to choose [a private account] has no serious plan for Social Security.”

    –Cain-Gingrich Debate, November 5, 2011

    RON
    PAUL

    “Technically, [Social Security is unconstitutional]. …there’s no authority [in the constitution for it].”

    –(Fox News Sunday, May 15, 2011)

    No direct position, but Paul sees it as irrelevant since he would dismantle the entire program and allow people to opt-out of Social Security.

    –(MSNBC interview, April 27, 2011)

    “But I want to privatize the retirement funds and put the responsibility on the individual.”

    –(CNN Situation Room interview, September 8, 2010)

    RICK
    PERRY

    Social Security “is a Ponzi scheme for these young people. …the idea that [young people] are working and paying into Social Security today, that the current program is going to be there for them… is a monstrous lie on this generation, and we can’t do that to them.”

    –Iowa Caucus event at the Vine Coffeehouse,

    8/27/11

    “if you’re a forty-five year-old or less, we’re going to move that retirement age up to sixty-nine or seventy.”

    Town Hall, 9/5/11

    “if only the new Dealers had been kind enough to allow workers to make their own choice about whether to participate [in Social Security]. as we know from experience, individuals would have done better on their own [with private accounts].”

    –Fed Up, 2010, page 61

    MITT
    ROMNEY

    “There simply is no [trust] ‘fund’ safely invested somewhere… to put it in a nutshell, the American people have been effectively defrauded out of their Social Security. … let’s look at what would happen if someone in the private sector did a similar thing… They would go to jail. But what has happened to the people responsible for the looming bankruptcy of Social Security? They keep returning to congress every two years.”

    –No Apology, 2010, pp. 172-3

    “Alternatively, we could gradually raise the retirement age. this does have a certain logic to it…”

    –No Apology, 2010, p. 173

    “One thing that [President Bush] proposed, and it’s a good idea, is to take some of that money, or all of that surplus [Social Security] money and allow people to have a personal account.”

    town hall, 6/5/2007

    RICK
    SANTORUM

    No position stated.

    “I proposed [raising the retirement age] back in 1994, and I think that’s an option that has to be on the table.”

    –(Meet the Press, June 12, 2011)

    “We’re in the middle of a phase-up [in the retirement age] to age 67…We need to continue to do that.”

    –(Remarks at Lancaster, SC, September 13, 2011)

    “Personal retirement accounts provide individuals—not the government—with control and ownership. and they hold the promise of a greater return for future generations than what they are promised by today’s Social Security system.”

    –(the Hill, March 1, 2005)

    ###

     
    Lt. Governor Simon supports campaign finance reform PDF Print E-mail
    News Releases - Politics & Elections
    Written by Kathryn Phillips   
    Monday, 19 December 2011 16:16

    CHICAGO – December 15, 2011. Lt. Governor Sheila Simon submitted testimony to the Governor's Campaign Finance Reform Task Force during a public hearing today in Chicago.

    Simon stated: “I would like to commend the Campaign Finance Reform Task Force for continuing the important work of the Illinois Reform Commission, which helped pass the first campaign finance limits in the history of this state. As a logical next step, I support a public finance system for judicial elections in Illinois that does not use general revenue dollars but is instead funded through an increase in court filing or lawyer registration fees. The perception that any judges could be unduly influenced by campaign contributions is something that our democracy and judicial system cannot afford to ignore.”

    Simon is a former Jackson County prosecutor and served on the Illinois Reform Commission, which was created by Governor Quinn in 2009 in the wake of former Governor Blagojevich's arrest. Governor Quinn created the Campaign Finance Reform Task Force in 2010 to review the implementation of the first phase of campaign finance reform and to study the feasibility of public financing or other reforms.

    ###

     
    More news from the Ron Paul Campaign PDF Print E-mail
    News Releases - Politics & Elections
    Written by Gary Howard   
    Monday, 19 December 2011 15:57
    Ron Paul Iowa Team Names New ‘Veterans For Ron Paul’ Coalition Members
    Hawkeye State heroes hail from Hamilton, Henry, and Pottawattamie Counties
    ANKENY, Iowa – The Ron Paul 2012 Presidential campaign announced today new members of its “Veterans for Ron Paul” nationwide coalition.

    Ron Paul, himself a veteran, believes national defense is the single most important responsibility the Constitution entrusts to the federal government.  His national defense policy of keeping America strong, secure, and respected has garnered the support of veterans in Iowa and nationally.

    The new “Veterans for Ron Paul” coalition members hail from Hamilton, Henry, and Pottawattamie Counties.

    Iraq War veteran Ryan Cook of Mount Pleasant proudly served in the United States Army for more than four years.

    Drawn to Congressman Paul’s foreign policy positions Mr. Cook said, “Ron Paul understands that nation-building abroad is devastating in both human and financial costs.  We have lost over 4,000 American fathers, brothers, and sons after a decade overseas.  We have spent billions of American taxpayer dollars.  American families and taxpayers can no longer afford it.  Ron Paul understands that.”

    Another supporter, retired Army Captain Gary Bruns, served more than six years in the military following the end of the Vietnam War. 

    “As an Air Force Veteran, Ron Paul took an oath to defend our nation against all enemies, foreign and domestic.  Dr. Paul’s record is clear – for decades he has supported a strong national defense.  I know he will represent me and veterans across the nation when he becomes president,” said Bruns, who resides in Council Bluffs.  

    Finally there is Ray Frye, a U.S. Army veteran living in Williams.  

    “Ron Paul has a pro-American foreign policy and believes in the values our nation was built upon.  He also understands that we need to end the kind of nation-building that increases our debt and sacrifices American lives,” said Mr. Frye.

    As a first basic step, those interested in joining the “Veterans for Ron Paul” coalition should visit the official page here.  Those residing in Iowa should email Iowa Voter Outreach Director Meghann Walker at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

    ###
    Ron Paul Iowa Team Names New ‘Small Businesses for Ron Paul’ Coalition Members
    Inspired by Paul’s economic message, members hail from Muscatine, Des Moines, and Clinton counties
    ANKENY, Iowa – The Ron Paul 2012 Presidential campaign announced today new members of its “Small Businesses for Ron Paul” nationwide coalition.

    Dr. Paul’s platform, which includes a return to restoring sound money, responsible spending, lower taxes, and free markets, has excited small business owners across Iowa and nationally.

    The new “Small Businesses for Ron Paul” members hail from Muscatine, Des Moines and Clinton Counties.

    The first of these is Wayne Zumwalt, who for more than 30 years has owned and operated Zumwalt Tile.

    “Dr. Paul has been a true champion of individual liberty who understands the Constitution's role in preserving our freedoms.  He'll get Washington out of the way and allow the economy to grow again.  Small business needs a friend in the White House, and I trust the man who sticks to his principles, and that man is Ron Paul,” said Mr. Zumwalt of Muscatine.

    Another supporter is Eric Riendinger, who owns and operates Attention Signs in Des Moines.

    “Dr. Paul acknowledges that our country is faced with a serious debt crisis.  He is also willing to take the bold steps necessary to turn things around.  As a small business owner, I’m confident that Dr. Paul’s economic plan will restore American prosperity,” Mr. Riendinger stated.

    Finally there is Rodney Gibbons, owner of the furniture store Slumberland, which employs eight people.

    “Ron Paul’s life work as a doctor and a congressman shows exactly who he is. Dr. Paul has always defended the rights of the unborn and argues that we should treat people around the world the way we would want to be treated. In Congress, he stood against those threatening our individual freedoms and liberty, everyday fighting to shrink the size of the federal government,” said Mr. Gibbons.

    “I could write a book on the reasons why I support Dr. Paul,” concluded Gibbons of Burlington. 

    As a first basic step, those interested in joining the “Small Businesses for Ron Paul” nationwide coalition should visit the official page here.  Those residing in Iowa should email Iowa Voter Outreach Director Meghann Walker at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

    ###
    Ron Paul Wins Cedar Valley Tea Party Presidential Straw Poll
    Paul wins local contest within Black Hawk County
    ANKENY, Iowa – 2012 Republican Presidential candidate Ron Paul won another local tea party presidential straw poll in Iowa tonight, outshining his competitors in a display of growing organizational strength around the state.

    Paul easily won first place, garnering 37 out of the total 60 votes cast in the inaugural Cedar Valley Tea Party presidential straw poll.  Placing second and third place, respectively, were Rick Santorum with 9 votes and Newt Gingrich with 5 votes. 

    Voting took place in-person only at 7:00 p.m., with results announced at around 8:00 p.m. at the PIPAC Center, 1521 Technology Parkway, Cedar Falls, where the organization meets the second Tuesday of each month from 6:30 to 8:00 p.m. 

    All candidates currently competing for the Republican nomination were listed on the ballot.  Greg Radke, Black Hawk County co-chair and Waterloo city coordinator for the Ron Paul 2012 campaign, spoke as Dr. Paul’s surrogate.  Gingrich was the only other candidate represented by a surrogate.

    The Cedar Valley Tea Party was formed in early 2009 with a mission to “convey meaningful conservative change at the local, state, and national levels by educating, motivating and informing the citizens of Iowa about relevant social and political issues affecting them today and in the future,” according to the organization’s website. 

    “We’re pleased to have the support of many Iowans who identify with the tea party, as Ron Paul’s message of constitutionally-limited government resonates quite well among this core group of citizen activists.  The results of this contest and others like it contribute to our goal of a strong top-three finish,” said Ron Paul 2012 Iowa Chairman Drew Ivers.

    This local win follows Ron Paul’s endorsement by two Buena Vista-area tea party co-founders, his endorsement by two Dubuque-area tea party founders, and his winning first place in the Dubuque Tea Party presidential straw poll.

    Full results of the Cedar Valley Tea Party presidential straw poll are as follows:

    Paul 37
    Santorum 9
    Gingrich 5
    Bachmann 3
    Huntsman 3
    Romney 2
    Perry 1
    ###
    Ron Paul Iowa Team Names New ‘Doctors for Ron Paul’ Coalition Members
    Fellow medical professionals hail from Johnson, Story and Page counties
    ANKENY, Iowa – The Ron Paul 2012 Presidential campaign announced today new members of its “Doctors for Ron Paul” nationwide coalition, this time highlighting medical professionals from the first-in-nation voting state of Iowa.

    Doctors are excited about Dr. Paul’s candidacy in large part due to his firm stance of repealing Obamacare, restoring health freedom, and curtailing government intervention in healthcare.  Seeking to restore the doctor-patient relationship as an alternative to the present patient-bureaucrat-doctor hindrance to healthcare delivery, Hawkeye State doctors have stepped forward with the following endorsements.

    Dr. Christopher Peters is a nine-year Army Medical Corps veteran currently practicing as a thoracic surgeon in Iowa City and resides in Coralville with his wife and three sons.  He was a 2010 Libertarian Party candidate for the Iowa State Senate, and set a record for an Iowa Libertarian candidate, garnering over 25 percent of the popular vote. 

    Today Dr. Peters stated, “As a fellow physician and surgeon, I fully support Dr. Ron Paul in his bid to become the next President of the United States because he brings the same qualities to public service as one should expect from any physician.  Dr. Paul’s primary interest is his patient, which in this case is our country, and this patient is in ill health and has been poorly cared for by our partisan politics, corporatism, and banking system.  Dr. Paul has taken the time to understand his patient’s condition thoroughly, without being hindered by traditional left-right politics, and has prescribed solutions that are long overdue.”

    “Like any good physician, Dr. Paul has been consistent and reliable throughout his long years of public service, and I completely trust that he will put our country’s needs before the interests of anything or anyone else,” added Dr. Peters.

    As a retired OB/GYN, Daniel Keller is both an MD and Ph.D.  He served in the Air Force as a flight surgeon for two years, and was a physiology instructor to medical students for seven years.  Dr. Keller emphasizes that during his career, he has never performed an abortion, been sued for malpractice, or had the mother die during or after a delivery.  He resides in Nevada with his wife, and has six children.

    Among the cited reasons why medical professionals should support Ron Paul, Dr. Keller notes, “Dr. Paul has two brothers who are Christian ministers, and is himself a Christian.  He would never undertake a procedure that is dangerous and might result in harm to his patient.  Dr. Paul knows that the physician’s first responsibility is to his patient – not the government which is terribly anxious to pay the bill.”

    Wrapping up today’s endorsements is Dr. John Bowery, a Shenandoah family physician.  His statements follow:

    “My small rural hospital must comply with more than 130,000 pages of rules and regulations that govern Medicare and Medicaid alone.  Every time I transfer a patient from our emergency room for care at a larger hospital, I risk federal prosecution, a $50,000 fine and jail time under the federal Emergency Medicine and Active Labor Act.  Of all the presidential candidates, only Doctor Paul has shown that he understands how this cancer of bureaucracy is destroying health care, endangering patients, and ruining good medical practice in America.  I am also convinced that only a President Paul would have the knowledge and courage to give us the cure.”

    As a first basic step, those interested in joining the “Doctors for Ron Paul” coalition should visit the official page here.  Those residing in Iowa should email Iowa Voter Outreach Director Meghann Walker at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

    ###

     
    Braley Joins “No Labels” to Release “Make Congress Work” Action Plan PDF Print E-mail
    News Releases - Politics & Elections
    Written by Jeff Giertz   
    Monday, 19 December 2011 14:46

    Nonpartisan group pushing for reforms to bring parties together in Congress 

    Washington, DC – Tomorrow, Rep. Bruce Braley (IA-01) will join the No Labels organization, a coalition of citizens, current and former lawmakers, and top opinion makers from across the country to hold a news conference where the group will release its Congressional reform plan known as “Make Congress Work.”

    The event is the official start of No Labels’ campaign to create systemic change in Washington through the implementation of a 12-point proposal aimed at breaking gridlock, reducing political polarization, and promoting constructive debate.

    WHAT:  No Labels event announcing its Congressional action plan, “Make Congress Work.”

    WHO:  Congressman Bruce Braley (D-IA)

    Senator Joe Manchin (D-WV)

    Senator Dean Heller (R-NV)

    Senator Bill Nelson (D-FL)

    Senator Joe Lieberman (I-CT)

    Congressman Jim Cooper (D-TN)

    Congressman Tom Petri (R-WI)

    Former Senator Evan Bayh (D-IN)

    Former Congressman Tom Davis (R-VA)

    Former Congressman Mickey Edwards (R-OK)

    Hon. David Walker, No Labels co-founder and former U.S. Comptroller General

    Mark McKinnon, No Labels co-founder and former adviser to President George Bush

    Kiki McLean, No Labels co-founder and fmr. comms adviser to VP Al Gore and Sen. John Kerry

    Bill Galston, No Labels co-founder, Brookings Sr. Fellow, and former adviser to President Clinton

    Jonathan Miller, Citizen Leader, No Labels co-founder and former Kentucky State Treasurer

    Lisa Borders, Citizen Leader, No Labels co-founder and former head of Atlanta City Council

    Ted Buerger, Citizen Leader, entrepreneur and co-founder of Americantowns.com

    WHENTuesday December 12, 2011 at 10:30am EST

    WHERECannon House Office Building,  Caucus Room, Washington, DC

    # # #

     
    Cain Commentary, “Cain supporters, stay tuned: We’ll take action from the outside” PDF Print E-mail
    News Releases - Politics & Elections
    Written by Friends of Herman Cain   
    Monday, 19 December 2011 14:45
    Since my campaign ended, I’ve been honored to hear from so many people who asked me to continue because they felt I was the person who could help this country fix things that urgently needed fixing. I will continue to lead but not as a candidate, because I chose to put family first.

    I will continue to be your voice and our voice. We will make 9-9-9 a movement. We will put “strength” back into Peace through Strength and Clarity. We will become energy independent. We will put “united” back into the United States of America.

    I know this from you: When the people understand it, they will demand it!

    We can’t count on the mainstream media to properly inform us, because too many members of the media are chasing the sensationalized or distorted story. Many Members of Congress are so busy trying to keep up with the legislative process, small incremental changes in the laws and the partisan cat fights that the big changes needed never get addressed. Worse yet, they never even try.

    We have seen repeatedly that expecting 535 Members of Congress and the president to make bold changes to truly fix problems from the inside of Washington is not going to happen. Washington is broken! We must change it from the outside.

    The late Sen. Everett Dirksen popularized the phrase “when they feel the heat, they will see the light.” We will be the heat like they have never felt it before. Politicians’ actions are ultimately determined by what they believe the people are demanding of them. We will demand bold changes.

    This is why I have created The Cain Solutions.

    With your continued help and support, The Cain Solutions is designed to change the dynamics in Washington, D.C. The critics will say this can’t be done. Remember, these are the same critics who did not think we would make it as far as we did in the Republican presidential nominating contest.

    The Cain Solutions will initially focus on three critical crises:
    1. Economic growth
    2. Sound money
    3. Energy independence
    Whether the pundits like it or not, my campaign took off because of the 9-9-9 plan. It was a classic case of an idea that was substantive, effective and easy for people to understand. The tax code is a mess. Rates are too high, loopholes are too prevalent and people in Washington are constantly trying to use the tax code to manipulate behaviors and outcomes. The 9-9-9 plan would achieve a massive transfer of power from Washington to the people. We can make that happen.

    Sound money involves both fiscal and monetary sanity. Congress and the White House refuse to enact a responsible budget that’s balanced and achieves real spending restraint. They refuse to address major spending commitments that have us saddled with massive debt and unfunded entitlement obligations. And they constantly try to manipulate the currency to cover this up. Sound money policy would stop the pretending, stop the manipulation and bring back a strong dollar along with sensible fiscal behavior.

    Finally, energy independence gets into everything from regulatory reform to national security. Most people have no idea how severely excessive federal regulations hamper our ability to access plentiful, affordable energy resources right here in the USA. Excessive regulations add mightily to the cost of exploration and distribution. And as we are now seeing, we can’t even build a pipeline to get oil from our friends in Canada due to a political stalling tactic by the president.

    This regulatory environment is insane. Politicians yammer on about “job creation,” but there is scarcely a better way to create jobs than to get out of the way of domestic oil extraction, production and distribution. It addresses a real need and a real demand that will exist for a very long time in the future. If the people realized this, they would demand an end to these crazy regulatory policies – and change would come.

    This will be the initial focus of The Cain Solutions. While we’re putting the effort together, you can sign up at TheCainSolutions.com, so you’ll be among the first to be informed, involved, and inspired when things get rolling.

    Cain supporters, stay tuned. We’re still going to get the job done. We’re going to have to do it from the outside, and I will lead the way and be the people’s voice.

     

     
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