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Joni Ernst on Social Security

 

 


Consider all options for solvency; must be bipartisan

Q: How do we keep Social Security solvent?

Ernst: I have said many times over that we need to look at all options. I have not said whether I will support one option over another. All of these options do need to be looked at and we need to find out what are the best ways for moving forward. But it has to be bipartisan. It has to be bipartisan if it's going to pass. One of the easiest ways to help shore up Social Security and Medicare is to make sure that we are fully employed as a nation.

Source: Iowa Public Television transcript of 2020 Iowa Senate debate , Sep 28, 2020

Something like personal savings accounts for younger workers

Democratic TV ads in Iowa have repeatedly misrepresented Joni Ernst's position on Social Security, claiming she "would privatize Social Security" or that she has "proposed privatizing Social Security." But Ernst hasn't proposed or endorsed any plan to change Social Security. At most, Ernst has said that she would consider allowing "younger workers," or those "just entering the workforce," to put some portion of their Social Security payroll taxes into interest-bearing or stock market-based "personal savings accounts" for their retirement.

The Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee aired a TV ad in August called "Team," saying that Ernst "would privatize Social Security." But that goes too far. Ernst hasn't advocated for a completely privatized program, and she certainly hasn't talked about making changes for seniors currently collecting benefits or those nearing retirement, such as the white-haired man featured in the DSCC's ad.

Source: FactCheck.org PacWatch on 2014 Iowa Senate debate , Oct 7, 2014

Open to privatizing Social Security, but honor promises

Ernst was prodded to explain several positions she staked out on her way to winning the Republican primary in June, such as being open to privatizing Social Security, opposing a federal minimum wage, hoping to eventually phase out ethanol subsidies, and wanting to eliminate the Department of Education.

Ernst defended keeping privatization on the table as one option to save Social Security. many options out there. I haven't endorsed one option over another." Braley said privatizing should not be on the table and neither should raising the retirement age.

Source: Politico.com e-zine on 2014 Iowa Senate debate , Sep 28, 2014

Preserve and protect Social Security & Medicare

Protecting Social Security and Medicare: Joni believes strongly that Social Security and Medicare must be preserved and protected for our seniors of today and tomorrow. She opposes any efforts to change the promised benefits for today's seniors. At the same time she supports reforms that will strengthen both Social Security and Medicare to ensure the long-term health of both programs for generations to come.
Source: 2014 Senate campaign website, JoniForIowa.com, "Issues" , Sep 9, 2013

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