Honesty About Entitlements

A quick post in the ‘we’re doomed no matter what’ file.

In the 26th congressional district in southeast Florida vulnerable Democrat incumbent Joe Garcia might lose his seat tonight to Republican challenger Carlos Curbelo.

The two campaigns, and their supporters, have been trading blows with attack ads on television about their positions on Social Security.

Garcia’s ad features a secretly recorded video of Curbelo talking about Social Security to an assembled group. Curbelo says that Social Security is a Ponzi scheme and that means testing may be required to keep the program operating.

They kindly caption their video:

VO: Two faced corporate lobbyist Curbelo. In Florida Curbelo claims one thing about Medicare and Social Security, but in a Washington meeting Curbelo changed his tune, calling Social Security and Medicare a Ponzi scheme.

Carlos Curbelo: “…a system that um, you know, is a Ponzi scheme”

VO: He’d end the Social Security and Medicare guarantee with means testing.

Carlos Curbelo: “We might want to do means testing.”

VO: Two faced lobbyist Carlos Curbelo. Lying to Florida and risking our retirement.

Joe Garcia: I’m Joe Garcia and I approved this message.

The National Republican Campaign Committee ad for Carlos Curbelo slams Garcia’s support of Obama care and cuts to Medicare.

Read the transcript of the NRCC spot against Garcia:

Fact checkers called Garcia’s ads misleading and false.

The truth: it was Garcia who supported Obama care cutting seven hundred billion from Medicare.

And it was Garcia who supported a plan to raise the Social Security retirement age to 69 and cut benefits. Joe Garcia, false attacks, failing seniors. Carlos Curbelo’s plan protects seniors and Curbelo will make sure seniors get the benefits they deserve the National Republican Campaign Committee is responsible for the content of this advertisement.

There are issues with both ads which show that candidates from both parties do not want to be up front with the voters. Garcia’s ad wants to pretend that the only thing keeping us from guaranteeing Social Security and Medicare forever are some dastardly Republicans. Curbelo rightly points out that by supporting Obama care that Garcia accepted a large cut to Medicare but then takes issue with his supporting a plan to raise the retirement age.

None of the sniping will help address the fact that Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid have future liabilities that run into the tens of trillions of dollars. This is before introducing Obama care into the mix.

It is understandable that neither party wants to incur the wrath of voters but we can either make the hard choices now or ignore the problem until our creditors step in to make cuts.

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