REPORT: Gingrich To Propose Social Security Alternative Today In New Hampshire

Compiled by Steve Parkhurst, Senior Editor for US Daily Review.

According to the blog “Conservatives with Newt“, the former Speaker will deliver remarks at 12:30pm EST today in New Hampshire.

The Associated Press this morning has reported the following:

MANCHESTER, N.H. — Republican presidential contender Newt Gingrich wants to allow younger workers to choose private retirement accounts as an alternative to Social Security.

The former House speaker, who has seen his political fortunes improving in recent weeks, planned to tell students at St. Anselm College on Monday that he wants younger workers to have another option and wants to end the expectation that Social Security is the only safety net for older workers.

Gingrich’s plan would also let the markets determine how much money workers who choose private accounts would get each month.

His aides did not immediately provide a price tag for the proposal.

“Growth and innovation means securing and strengthening Social Security by empowering Americans with the option to invest in personal savings accounts,” Gingrich said in remarks prepared for delivery. “This gives Americans ownership over their retirement and the opportunity to unleash the power of the market to enjoy prosperous retirements beyond their most optimistic expectations, while also wiping out all future liabilities in the Social Security system.”

Gingrich said his plan would reduce the inequality between workers who paid into Social Security as their sole retirement account and higher income workers who benefit from private funds.

President George W. Bush offered some similar proposals for Social Security soon after winning re-election in 2004, but ran into stiff resistance from Democrats and from some within his own party about proposing changes to the popular program.

In recent weeks, Gingrich has seen a boost in the polls as he tries to position himself as the leading alternative to former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney just six weeks until Iowa’s leadoff presidential caucuses.

During the appearance in New Hampshire, Gingrich also planned to renew his call for returning control of welfare programs to the states, as well as offering states alternatives to Medicare and introducing private options.

His plan would allow seniors in Medicare now to stay, but others would be eligible for subsidies toward traditional insurance plans.

“Unleashing competition will dramatically increase options for American seniors, while also lowering costs,” he said.

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Social Security can be an issue which can end a campaign pretty quickly.  You may recall the heat that Governor Perry took for calling social security a “ponzi scheme”, a statement the Governor later modified. Speaker Gingrich seems to be proposing a plan which is bold, without overreaching. And Gingrich, as we have seen in recent months, is as capable as anyone we will find, of staying on message and articulating his plan directly with the people. The former Speaker will likely position his plan against what the voters are likely to get with four more yours of the current president, that’s likely to lure people in his direction.

Much as the recent debate within the Republican primary field has been about tax reform, not just percentage points one way or the other, but fundamental reform, Newt Gingrich’s social security proposal appears to be another bold step in changing the conversation from one of age and history, to one of real power for the individual.

Steve Parkhurst is a political consultant, a writer at his blog as well as a Senior Editor here at US Daily Review, where he maintains the Across The Pond feature. Follow Steve on Twitter @SteveParkhurst

All opinions expressed on USDR are those of the author and not necessarily those of US Daily Review.

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