Friday, April 15, 2005


PD: LaTourette to host Bush but not sign on to plan

The Plain Dealer confirms that LaTourette will show up at the Bamboozlepalooza in Kirtland and introduce Bush. The PD is also able to get Steve to go on the record about Social Security.
"Off the top of my head it doesn't appeal to me," said LaTourette, adding that he would need to see a detailed plan of how such accounts would work.

"I would have to look at how you're going to pay for it," Sen. Mike DeWine said.

LaTourette and DeWine, who both face re-election next year, focused instead on the possibility that Republicans and Democrats might forge a compromise offering workers tax incentives to set aside savings for retirement in accounts that don't rely on diverting payroll taxes from Social Security.

Such an approach, which many Democrats have expressed a willingness to discuss, would mark a significant departure from the plan Bush outlined in January. LaTourette and DeWine emphasized that no proposal to revamp Social Security is likely to pass Congress without some Democratic support.

They said they believe that while Bush has succeeded in persuading the public that something must be done to address Social Security's long-term solvency, he has yet to win their constituents' support for any concrete action.

"I think the district is far from unanimous on how it should be solved," LaTourette said. "I'm the same way. I don't know how it should be solved."

DeWine said that in his conversations with people across the state, he detects no consensus yet that Social Security taxes should be allowed to go into accounts that would be invested in the stock and bond markets.

"He [Bush] has not made the sale on private accounts yet," DeWine said, "but he has made the sale on convincing people that there's a problem. So he's halfway there."
[. . . ]

He said Bush has repeatedly told him that he is open to a wide range of ideas on how to fix the program.

"He's never said that [personal accounts] is a dealbreaker," LaTourette said.


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