Mark Begich’s Preserving and Protecting Social Security Act is how progressives are going to shore up Social Security’s long-term finances and actually increase benefits across the board.
Retirement security has always been an extremely popular issue for the Democratic Party, and we’re not about to watch the Beltway trick our party into piddling away it’s advantage on this issue. Republicans want to cut Social Security. Democrats want to expand it. It should be that simple.
Rush Holt supports the PPSSA and Cory Booker supports raising the retirement age, and that’s why we’ll be supporting Rush Holt in the New Jersey Senate primary in 2014. Support for PPSSA will be a key litmus test for us in every other primary too, including PA-8 and PA-13.
Via Blue America:
Last April, just three months before he passed away, the ailing liberal lion Senator Frank Lautenberg issued a strong statement in opposition to proposed cuts to Social Security. He said:
“We can’t afford to further balance our books on the backs of middle-class families and seniors. The proposed cuts to Social Security benefits are a major problem that would hurt countless Americans.”
Sadly, the man considered to be the front runner to succeed him, Newark mayor and media darling Cory Booker, isn’t willing to hold that line. He said just this week that he’d consider raising the retirement age for younger people, a patented Republican dodge and a sure sign that he cannot be trusted to protect the Democratic Party’s greatest achievement.
But there is someone in the race who will protect Social Security and his name is Congressman Rush Holt. Holt not only opposes all cuts to our most important social insurance program, he is a co-sponsor of the Protecting and Preserving Social Security Act, which would expand Social Security benefits not cut them.
Where Mayor Booker has said that he has “not formed an opinion” on a carbon tax, something which41 Democratic Senators have already voted for, Rush Holt is card carrying scientist who strongly supports it.
Where Mayor Booker thinks calling for repeal of the Patriot Act is “irresponsible”, Rush Holt sponsored a bill in the House just this week to do just that. He said:
“The executive branch’s groundless mass surveillance of Americans has turned our conception of liberty on its head. My legislation would restore the proper constitutional balance and ensure our people are treated as citizens first, not suspects.”
Where Mayor Booker considers Wall Street a strong friend and ally, Rush Holt … doesn’t.
The last thing we need in the US Senate is another Wall Street friendly centrist with a propensity for government secrecy and a willingness to cut our most important social insurance programs. There are plenty of those already.
Glenn Greenwald calls Congressman Holt “a genuine stalwart on civil liberties and privacy and vehement opponent of the crony capitalism that governs DC.”
Tim Carpenter of Progressive Democrats of America says, “He doesn’t just vote progressive, he speaks out and leads on the issues that unite us as progressives — Medicare for All, The Robin Hood Tax, Repeal of the Patriot Act and Hands Off Social Security.”
In the upcoming primary, New Jersey can choose an establishment celebrity who plays a progressive on TV or it can choose a real progressive. Blue America and Progressive Democrats of America strongly believe the choice in this race is clear and urge you support Congressman Rush Holt for US Senate who will be one of the Senate’s strongest civil liberties champions and will join the ranks of Elizabeth Warren, Sherrod Brown, Ed Markey and Tammy Baldwin in support of economic fairness, justice, and opportunity.
If you care about Social Security, you’ll help Rush Holt. Booker responded today to liberal outrage by backing off his earlier comments and saying he won’t support cuts to Social Security. But if it takes progressives hammering him to protect the Party’s signature program in a Democratic primary is it reasonable to believe that he can be trusted once he gets into the Big Money Boys Club of the US Senate? Honestly, this issue doesn’t take any nuance or any thinking through. A real progressive can answer that question without any equivocation every time he or she is asked: “no, I will not cut Social Security.” That’s not a hard one.
And any candidate who cavalierly tosses off the opinion that repealing the Patriot Act is “pretty irresponsible” clearly has no idea of the stakes in these issues and can be expected to simply go along to get along with whatever the national security state wants to do. We already have too many of those in the US Senate.
Here’s what a real civil libertarian and protector of the constitution sounds like: