Tuesday, January 3, 2017

Who Votes for Sam Johnson?

He's not my Congressman. Even if I lived in Sam Johnson's Collin County district, I wouldn't vote for him. But it's not just because I don't agree with his politics of tax-breaks-for-the-rich and safety-net-cuts-for-the-middle-class. It's because he isn't honest enough to tell us what he's really doing. He's lying by omission, if you will.

The evidence comes from his own press release: "Sam Johnson Unveils Plan to Permanently Save Social Security." A truthful Sam Johnson would have owned up to the fact that his bill is a plan not to "save" Social Security but to *cut* it. The Sam Johnson we have instead doesn't use the word cut at all. He calls it "modernizing how benefits are calculated." Likewise, he calls delaying when you can retire "updating" the retirement age. He uses language that sounds good to put bad things over on the American workers.

He seeks support for his safety net cuts by pitting the old against the young. Current retirees don't bear the brunt of his cuts. Young workers do. Don't take my word for how bad it is for the young. According to Scott Burns, longtime personal finance columnist for The Dallas Morning News, under Johnson's plan, "a 33-year-old medium wageworker today would experience a benefit cut of 33.2 percent when retiring in 2050." Scott Burns compares it to going into a candy store, plunking down the same amount you've always done, only to unwrap the candy bar and find that it's "smaller, way smaller" than you used to get. And Sam Johnson wants you to think he's doing you a favor.

Maybe Sam Johnson believes that the safety net is a hammock that makes Americans lazy. Or that Social Security is a luxury that America can't afford. All that's debatable, but why can't Sam Johnson just level with the American people? Why can't he just say he's introducing a bill to cut Social Security? Who votes for Congressmen like that?

1 comment:

Mark Steger said...

Sam Johnson announced he won't seek re-election in 2018. So, nobody will be voting for him ever again. I guess that's good...if I had confidence that his replacement will be truthful with his constituents.