Student Newspaper Calls on Franken and Coleman to Propose Social Security Fixes
Minnesota Daily: Time for GOP and DFL Candidates to 'Clearly Address' Issue
For Immediate Release
Contact: Christopher Truscott
PLYMOUTH—In its Sunday editorial, the student newspaper at the University of Minnesota called on Republican Sen. Norm Coleman and DFLer Al Franken to "clearly address the funding of Social Security and their plans for a solution."
Noting that Barkley, in Saturday night's debate at the Breck School, outlined four clear options for ensuring the program's solvency, the Minnesota Daily editors wrote:
"Franken talked about his commitment to fix the situation, but said 'eventually we would have to have a solution for this,' noting that he wouldn't want to invest it into the stock market like some politicians have suggested. Coleman attacked Franken about not stating an actual solution, but didn't seem to offer a clear solution either and then stated his absolute commitment to young people and the obligation to fund social security.
"Since Barkley outlined his four ideas for social security, we call on Franken and Coleman to clearly address the funding of social security and their plans for a solution."
On Sunday, Barkley reiterated his commitment to Social Security, which can be preserved for future generations by either:
· Implementing means-testing to determine eligibility for Social Security benefits;
· Raising the retirement age;
· Raising the tax workers pay into the program; or
· Raising the ceiling on income taxed for contribution to the Social Security trust fund.
"The solutions are only difficult if your top priorities are simply serving the AARP or getting reelected," Barkley said. "But if we accept the hard truths about entitlements and their funding, there's no reason in the world we can't save these programs. We don't need another 'Blue Ribbon Commission' to study this issue again."
In Saturday night's debate, Franken argued Social Security is solvent for decades to come, despite the concerns of many young people that the program won't be there when it's time for their retirement.
"Congress has been robbing the Social Security trust fund dry for the past six years," Barkley said. "In 2000, Al Gore talked about implementing a 'lock box' policy, but the real trouble is that too many people today have keys to the lock box."
* * * * *
Barkley, a 58-year-old Minnesota native, served as the director of the Minnesota Office of Strategic and Long Range Planning under Gov. Jesse Ventura. In November 2002, Ventura appointed Barkley to fill the final two months of the late Sen. Paul Wellstone's term.
The former governor said recently that Barkley is "measured minute by minute … the most effective U.S. senator in Minnesota history."
More information is available online at www.senatorbarkley.com.
"Senate debate, round two" available online at http://www.mndaily.com/2008/10/11/senate-debate-round-two