AARP Switch Sparks Fresh Calls for Social Security Overhaul

Carol E. Lee
The Wall Street Journal

AARP’s decision to drop its opposition to cutting Social Security benefits is bringing fresh calls for lawmakers to take up the issue.

“Today marks a watershed moment in American politics,” Third Way President Jonathan Cowan said in a statement. “For decades, AARP has stood against any substantial changes to Social Security. Now that they have opened the door to reform, it is time for lawmakers to walk through it.”

Mr. Cowan issued the statement in response to a Wall Street Journal story disclosing the AARP’s changed stance. The longtime policy director of the seniors group, John Rother, explained in the article: “The ship was sailing. I wanted to be at the wheel when that happens.”

Mr. Cowan also pointed out that while Third Way does not agree with AARP on the details of Social Security reform – “they want to rely mostly on tax increases, while our plan would make about two dollars in benefit reductions for every one dollar of revenue increases” – the group welcomed AARP’s acknowledgement “that change is needed” and said the move could push Democrats and Republicans to work on the issue.

The article continues at The Wall Street Journal.

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