Rick Perry on Social Security

Last Updated : Dec 13, 2011


Throughout the years, Governor Perry has not been vocal on social security. Starting in 2010, he began to discuss the program in the context of a book he had written on the expansion of the federal government. On several news programs, Governor Perry stated that social security was a ponzi scheme, and that his children were in their 20's and aware that social security would not be there for them if nothing was changed.

When he has been pressed to discuss possible solutions to addressing the shortfalls, Governor Perry has stated that he would consider letting the states decide their own social security implementation.

In October of 2011, Governor Perry introduced his plan for Social Security. The plan consisted of the goals of preserving benefits for current and near-term retirees, stopping the raids on the Social Security trust fund, and giving younger workers a true ownership stake in their contributions to Social Security.

  • No change for those at or near retirement
  • Prevent politicians from raiding the Social Security Trust Fund
    • Allow young workers to place a portion of their SS funds into private account
  • Raise retirement age for chosen workers
    • Gradual phased-in raise for the Social Security retirement age
    • Leave the early-retirement age at 62
    • Exceptions for those in labor-intensive jobs, such as mining
  • Means Testing
    • A blended index where low wage earners and those near retirement receive the same benefits
    • High wage earners receive lower benefits
  • Allow state employees to opt out of Social Security


Heritage Foundation

In November of 2010, Governor Perry was speaking at the Heritage foundation and stated that social security was a ponzi scheme. He stated that his children in their 20's were aware that social security would not be around for them.


CNN Appearance

On November 10, 2010 Governor Perry appeared on CNN with Eliot Spitzer to promote his new book. He discusses social security but avoids giving specific solutions. He notes that there are counties in Texas that have opted out of social security and that one solution would be to let states handle it.


Fox News Appearance

On November 21, 2010 Governor Perry appeared on Fox News with Chris Wallace and referred to social security as a ponzi scheme. He did not state that he would seek to end the program, but stated that the country should deal with Medicaid first and then address social security.


Monstrous Lie

In August of 2011, Governor Perry spoke at numerous campaign events in Iowa. At one of those events, Governor Perry referred to social security as a monstrous lie in the idea that it would be solvent for future generations.


Op-Ed: Honest with the American People

On September 12, 2011 Governor Perry published an op-ed in USA Today discussing his views on social security and pledged to secure the program for older Americans.


TEA Party Debate

Governor Perry participated in the TEA party debate in Tampa Bay , Florida in September of 2011. He was asked about his previous statements on social security and about his recent op-ed ensuring that he would protect the system. He stated that it was an iron-clad guarantee that social security would be there for those in the program or already in the program.


Michigan Economic Debate

In November of 2011, Governor Perry participated in the Michigan economic debate. He discussed his views on social security.


2012 Presidential Campaign Plan



[1] Website: Fox News / Huffington Post Article: Rick Perry Insists Social Security is Worse than a Ponzi Scheme Author: NA Accessed on: 07/19/2011

[2] Website: Huffington Post Article: Rick Perry: GOP Is Too Timid To Call Social Security A Ponzi Schemern Author: Sam Stein Accessed on: 07/26/2011

[3] Website: Houston Chronicle Article: Perry calls Social Security 'monstrous lie' Author: PEGGY FIKAC, AUSTIN BUREAU Accessed on: 09/13/2011

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