On Capitol Hill, it seems they just can’t stop saying “Ponzi Scheme.”
Mitt Romney’s not the only one imploring his fellow Republicans to, please, stop calling Social Security a Ponzi Scheme. The one-time establishment GOP superstar Mitch Daniels did it this week, in an interview with the New York Times. Here’s what that sounded like:
“If there’s a problem with ‘Ponzi scheme,’ it is that it’s too frank, not that it’s wrong,” Daniels said. There’s polling to back him up.
Republicans polled by Gallup recently didn’t have a problem with calling Social Security a Ponzi Scheme (which for the record, it totally isn’t). But independents did, and there are signs that Rick Perry’s continued use of the term could hurt his electability.
So, Romney and Daniels (and others) say, don’t go near it. Apparently nobody told Capitol Hill.
Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI), who already dragged the GOP through a tough entitlement fight over his House Republican budget package, picked up on the phrase today on the the Laura Ingraham radio show.
Rep. Mike Coffman (R-CO) joined in on the fun, too. While analyzing one of the presidential debates on radio TV recently, Coffman picked up on the shift in Perry’s rhetoric on Social Security — namely from “it’s unconstitutional” to “I’m going to fix it and protect it forever” — and praised it, while also jumping feet-first into the it’s a Ponzi Scheme camp.
“I think obviously it is a Ponzi scheme, but [Perry] has to say he is going to fix it,” Coffman said. “And he did that in the last debate where he didn’t do that in the first debate. Now I think that was positive.”
Democrats are paying attention, and they seem pretty happy about Hill Republicans having the guts to tell it like it is (according to them, anyway.)
“Paul Ryan’s belief that Social Security works like a Ponzi scheme proves — once and for all — that House Republicans have really declared war on seniors,” DCCC spokesperson Jesse Ferguson told the Huffington Post.
Expect to see a lot more of that kind of talk from Democrats if the GOP keeps up this Ponzi talk.