Barack Obama – Weekly Address – Honoring Social Security, Not Privatizing It
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Remarks of President Barack Obama
As Prepared for Delivery
August 14, 2010
Seventy-five years ago today, in the midst of the Great Depression, Franklin Roosevelt signed Social Security into law, laying a cornerstone in the foundation of Americaâ€™s middle class, and assuring generations of Americaâ€™s seniors that after a lifetime of hard work, theyâ€™d have a chance to retire with dignity. We have an obligation to keep that promise; to safeguard Social Security for our seniors, people with disabilities, and all Americans â€“ today, tomorrow, and forever.
Now, weâ€™ve been talking for a long time about how to do that; about how to make sure Social Security is healthy enough to cover the higher costs that are kicking in now that baby boomers are retiring. And Iâ€™m committed to working with anyone, Democrat or Republican, who wants to strengthen Social Security. Iâ€™m also encouraged by the reports of serious bipartisan work being done on this and other issues in the fiscal commission that I set up several months ago.
One thing we canâ€™t afford to do though is privatize Social Security â€“ an ill-conceived idea that would add trillions of dollars to our budget deficit while tying your benefits to the whims of Wall Street traders and the ups and downs of the stock market.
A few years ago, we had a debate about privatizing Social Security. And Iâ€™d have thought that debate wouldâ€™ve been put to rest once and for all by the financial crisis weâ€™ve just experienced. Iâ€™d have thought, after being reminded how quickly the stock market can tumble, after seeing the wealth people worked a lifetime to earn wiped out in a matter of days, that no one would want to place bets with Social Security on Wall Street; that everyone would understand why we need to be prudent about investing the retirement money of tens of millions of Americans.
But some Republican leaders in Congress donâ€™t seem to have learned any lessons from the past few years. Theyâ€™re pushing to make privatizing Social Security a key part of their legislative agenda if they win a majority in Congress this fall. Itâ€™s right up there on their to-do list with repealing some of the Medicare benefits and reforms that are adding at least a dozen years to the fiscal health of Medicare â€“ the single longest extension in history.
That agenda is wrong for seniors, itâ€™s wrong for America, and I wonâ€™t let it happen. Not while Iâ€™m President. Iâ€™ll fight with everything Iâ€™ve got to stop those who would gamble your Social Security on Wall Street. Because you shouldnâ€™t be worried that a sudden downturn in the stock market will put all youâ€™ve worked so hard for â€“ all youâ€™ve earned â€“ at risk. You should have the peace of mind of knowing that after meeting your responsibilities and paying into the system all your lives, youâ€™ll get the benefits you deserve.
Seventy-five years ago today, Franklin Roosevelt made a promise. He promised that from that day forward, weâ€™d offer â€“ quote â€“ â€œsome measure of protection to the average citizen and to his family against poverty-stricken old age.â€ Thatâ€™s a promise each generation of Americans has kept. And itâ€™s a promise America will continue to keep so long as I have the honor of serving as President. Thanks for listening. Thanks for watching. And have a nice weekend.
Barack Obama – Weekly Address – Honoring Social Security, Not Privatizing It. Iâ€™ll fight with everything Iâ€™ve got to stop those who would gamble your Social Security on Wall Street. Because you shouldnâ€™t be worried that a sudden downturn in the stock market will put all youâ€™ve worked so hard for â€“ all youâ€™ve earned â€“ at risk. You should have the peace of mind of knowing that after meeting your responsibilities and paying into the system all your lives, youâ€™ll get the benefits you deserve. Complete Full Script, Dialogue, Saying, Quotes, Words And Text.