ABC, CBS Abandon Hillary’s Talking Points on Social Security

October 16th, 2007 5:18 PM

The lefties won’t be pleased. The October 15 CBS “Evening News” and ABC “World News Tonight with Charles Gibson” had a different take on Social Security contrary to liberal Democratic presidential hopeful Hillary Clinton’s position.

On October 11, Clinton told CNBC’s John Harwood she wasn’t going to jump the gun and scare people by addressing their Social Security concerns. “I think what I owe the American people is to tell them I will not spook them and sound the alarm over Social Security because that’s not merited,” Clinton said. “We have time to deal with this problem. I will deal with it in a responsible fashion.”

But, ABC correspondent David Wright reported data that would make you think otherwise.

“In 10 years time, Social Security will be paying out more in benefits than it takes in taxes and about the time the last of the baby boomers retires, the system will go bankrupt,” Wright said.

Perhaps it was Clinton’s sentimentalism for historic figures. As Wright pointed out, Franklin Delano Roosevelt lacked foresight when he signed Social Security into law in 1935.

“Franklin Roosevelt did not foresee how a population boom might affect the program he created,” Wright said. “At the end of World War II, there were 44 workers paying Social Security taxes for every retiree collecting from the program. Now the ratio is just three to one and soon, there will be more retirees than workers.”

But, this wasn’t just an anomaly.

CBS Capitol Hill correspondent Chip Reid reported statistics differing from Clinton’s Social Security premise also. “[A] staggering 77 million baby boomers will begin cashing in on Social Security over the next 20 years, leaving it with a long-term shortfall of about $15 trillion – $50,000 for every man, woman and child in America today,” Reid said.

Both networks also cited conservative experts – Michael Tanner from The Cato Institute and David John from The Heritage Foundation – who pointed out the looming fiscal problems involving Social Security.