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McMahon Touts a Balanced Budget, But Refuses to Talk About Entitlement Reform

by Christine Stuart | Aug 29, 2010 11:59pm
(18) Comments | Commenting has expired
Posted to: Election 2010

Christine Stuart photo

Linda McMahon shakes hands with voters

Republican Linda McMahon’s latest mailing would have voters believe she’s “fighting for Connecticut’s seniors,“ but exactly how she will do that or what changes to Medicare and Social Security she may support isn’t a subject up for discussion on the campaign trail.

“Here’s my position: I really do think we’re going to have strengthen all of our entitlement programs, but that’s not really a discussion for the campaign trail,” McMahon said Friday evening at the Manchester Peach Festival. “I think that really needs to be in the legislative arena where we can have bipartisan debate and really talk about that earnestly.”

Would she raise the age for Medicare recipients? Would she privatize Social Security? McMahon refused to answer those questions saying the campaign trail wasn’t the place to talk about them.

She did say all entitlement programs, including Medicare and Social Security need to be “strengthened.”

“We’re going to have to strengthen, you know all of our entitlement programs, but when we do balanced budget we’re going to have to put everything—you know take a look at our programs,“ she said.

“We’re going to have to strengthen our entitlement programs because we have a contract with our seniors,” McMahon added returning to the campaign’s message, which appears in the recent mailing.

The “balanced budget“ McMahon refers to is a Republican proposal to change the U.S. Constitution to require Congress to balance the federal budget, 40 percent of which is made up of entitlement programs, such as Medicare and Social Security.

U.S. Rep. John Larson, D-1, who was shaking hands not far from McMahon Friday evening said that “most of the calls we get are about Social Security, Medicare, about getting your veterans benefits.“

“All of those programs are part of the overall budget. If you’re not talking about entitlements, you’re not talking about 40 percent of the budget,” Larson said.

He chalked up the lack of discussion of those issues in Connecticut’s U.S. Senate contest to a Republican strategy for the November election.

“I can understand why they don’t want to talk about it because they’re talking about privatizing Social Security, vouchering Medicare, and block granting Medicaid and then taking all benefits for people 55 years and younger and treating it as ordinary income. Because that’s the ownership society,” Larson said. “They want to direct fear and anger at this and say, ‘Oh, my God we’ve got these huge deficits we’ve gotta makes these cuts.’ So where are you going to cut?”

Christine Stuart photo

Richard Blumenthal shakes hands with voters as Manchester Democratic Town Chairman Michael Pohl watches

It’s unlikely a candidate as disciplined as McMahon will give an answer on the campaign trail.

But her latest mailing promises she’s going to protect senior citizens.

“Our seniors need quality care—not bigger government and higher premiums,” McMahon’s latest mailing states. She will also protest seniors by stopping the raid on the Social Security Trust Fund. “Out-of-control spending must end now because it is jeopardizing the long-term solvency of Social Security,” the four-sided mailer claims.

The McMahon campaign mailing continues with a theme that Blumenthal, who admits he misspoke on occasion about his service during Vietnam, is not being honest about his positions and would have you believe that the national health care plan which he supported will cut their Medicare benefits by $575 billion.

“Worse, the cuts to our seniors’ care are being used to increase the size of government,” the mailing goes onto state.

Blumenthal’s campaign said Sunday evening that the McMahon campaign is obfuscating the issue. Democratic proponents of the law, including Blumenthal, have said the Medicare cuts are to the privately-run Medicare Advantage plans, not the guaranteed Medicare benefits.

“Linda McMahon’s $50 million attack machine is continuing the same tired politics as usual,“ Mindy Myers, Blumenthal’s campaign manager, said Sunday. “Connecticut seniors know whether it’s protecting them from con artists or defending them against big drug companies, Dick Blumenthal has always fought for them, and that is exactly what he will do in Washington.”

“I’m talking about my commitment to the promises made by this nation to seniors through social security and Medicare. I intend to do everything in my power to keep those promises,“ Blumenthal said Friday in between handshakes.

Blumenthal’s stance on entitlement reform isn’t much more specific than keeping things the way they are. However, Blumenthal does have a specific section on his campaign website that addresses senior issues. McMahon doesn’t have a heading to address the specific issue. This was her first mailing targeting the demographic.

“Unfortunately Connecticut seniors can’t count on Linda McMahon. They don’t know where she stands on these important issues because she refuses to talk about them,” Myers said.

McMahon has been consistent in her desire to avoid conversations about entitlements.

According to the National Review Online, “She has never endorsed a specific entitlement reform,“ McMahon’s spokesman Ed Patru told the publication. “There are no plans on that end for the campaign at all. She believes any plans for Social Security or Medicare must be divorced from the hyper-partisan arena of the campaign and be done in the legislative process.”

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(18) Comments

posted by: hawkeye | August 30, 2010  9:28am

We have no money for Obama Healthcare, which further weakens, our fragile Social Security and Medicaire funds.  Our lack of businessman knowledge, oriented Congress, is financially burying our country. We need new people in Congress, like Linda McMahon. 

Millions of U. S. housewives, now have a better grasp, on meeting budgets, then our current, inept members in Congress.

We must start “replacing this motley crew” at the polls, on November 2!

posted by: redman | August 30, 2010  10:48am

I’m a Senior who supports a balanced budget. The democrats want to run away from fiscal responsibility. They fought against the balanced budget amendment, against the option to invest a portion of your Social Security and instead support the lie of a trust fund which doesn’t exists. The cuts the Medicare were real and Blumy can hid the fact that many Seniors lost benefits to help finance so called health care reform.

posted by: Martha H | August 30, 2010  3:39pm

Martha H

If memory serves, Lovely Linda kept my childhood favorites Pedro Morales and Bruno Sanmarrtino wrestling well into their 60’s.  If that’s not a senior entitlement, then I’m not Irish!

(PS. Were Tanaka and Fuji a tag-team of horribly racist Asian-American stereotypes….  OR just “born evil”??)

posted by: CT Jim | August 31, 2010  7:34am

Gee good ol Linda had no problems with deficits when her republican counterparts ran up more than $11 tillion in Debt.
She had no problem with Bush’s tax cuts costing $5 trillion and now she claims to be able to balance the budget and continue to give herself and her cronies tax cuts???
Does she know that the government is a REAL function without a scripted ending???
Does she know you can’t just shoot up the economy with steroids and everything will be fine.
Time to expose Linda.

posted by: hawkeye | September 2, 2010  12:34pm

Redman:
“I congratulate you, as an educated Senior Citizen, who tells the truth!”
May God bless you, in your effort to save our country!

posted by: Adamec | September 2, 2010  7:41pm

Absolutely! Herbert Hoover never raided the Social Security Trust Fund.

posted by: Mansfield1 | September 3, 2010  9:07am

Well, that’s true.  Herbert Hoover never did raid the Social Security Turst Fund.  But then how could he?  Social Security didn’t exist when old Herbie was protecting the Republic from the poor and the hungry.  Tea Baggers never seem to understand that though.  It’s all about keeping “government’s hands off my Medicare!”  I wonder if they realize that the Health Care Reform Bill eliminates the prescription drug donut hole?

posted by: hawkeye | September 3, 2010  6:16pm

Mansfield:

Sounds like, you not voting for Richard Blumenthal, as an Obama helper?

posted by: hawkeye | September 3, 2010  7:36pm

CT jim:  You blame Bush to take the heat off of our biggest national problem:  Barack Hussein Obama.  It won’t help Obama’s Congressional henchmen, who will be voted out of office on November 2.

Keep blaming Bush,if it satisfies you, but he is not the President who is burying this country, for nearly two years.

posted by: CT Jim | September 3, 2010  10:43pm

Hawkeye,
you been listening to way to much Glenn Beck and uncle Rushbo
See you in November.

posted by: lothar | September 4, 2010  2:23am

It’s funny, transparent, and sad that folks like Hawkeye like use the “Hussein” in Barack Obama’s name when they talk about the guy, and that they think the country needs “saving.” That’s just racism manifesting itself in a conscious fashion.

Here’s a newsflash: Obama supporters knew his middle name before the election, and they voted for him anyway! WOW how could that be?

In fact, I’d vote for the guy again today. I’m actually glad his election has drawn out and exposed a lot of American racism. the bigots are out of the closet. Voters interrupted the blissful ignorance of a whole segment of white America by electing a black man.

If you’re concerned that there was a big secret of some kind before election day, I’m sorry to inform you that you are embarrassingly mistaken. The real issue is that the tea party thug element can’t fathom how their ideology is so alien to the mainstream. For a long time, these people weren’t fringe. But it’s starting to become clear that most of America is past that level of accepted bigotry, and the tea party element clearly feels threatened by this. You can hear it in their voices.

The truth is, the majority of the people who elected Obama are white, and they’re just a lot more open-minded than the average tea party sympathizer. If that’s frightening to you, then it’s time to look inward and to identify your personal biases.

posted by: hawkeye | September 4, 2010  2:20pm

Lothar:

Being opposed to Obama is not racism.  It’s simply, bcause he is INCOMPETENT, and leading this country to oblivion!
Obama reportedly, doe not like to be addressed as Barack Hussein Obama. Why?  It is is real name, and he should take pride in it, as it reflects on his heritage. President Roosevelt was always known as Franklin Delano Roosevelt! 

So what’s the beef?

posted by: lothar | September 4, 2010  10:11pm

That’s correct Hawkeye - being opposed to Obama’s policies (rather than simply opposed to Obama, that must have been a Freudian slip on your part) is not racism. And I’m sure he’s as proud of his full name as anyone is of theirs.

But you, Hawkeye, are going out of your way to point out the guy’s middle name and that, unfortunately for you, makes you a transparent racist. You’re trying to influence the public debate and inflame anti-Islamic sentiment on the Internet. It’s ridiculous and obvious.

Like I said earlier, I voted for the guy knowing his middle name and I would do so again. But go ahead and keep at this - it’s people like you who think they’re influencing the public discourse against the president, but instead are hardening his base of support against racism.

Make no mistake about it -  anti-racist sentiment is a knee-jerk reaction to bigotry, just as much as bigotry is a knee-jerk reaction to people of color or non-Christian religious affiliations. You’re fanning the flames of the majority and you don’t even know it.

posted by: hawkeye | September 5, 2010  10:18am

I use Obama’s middle name, because it is his middle name, and because, perhaps, that Obama does not, like people to use it.  Too bad. It’s not racist, even though, you want to SPIN YOUR BOTTLE THAT WAY.

Perhaps, you aren’t taking your medication?

posted by: lothar | September 5, 2010  12:14pm

Pretty thin, Hawkeye. You’re not using anyone else’s middle name in your comments, so I think I’ve clearly hit the nail on the head about your effort to vilify the president here.

And if I were on meds, the only way I’d be able to afford any is through the Obama administration’s effort to reform health care.

And speaking of meds - some of McMahon’s wrestlers could have used some meds, rather than steroids. She made them sign contracts that included “death clauses” ... nice contracts from a nice CEO.

From Don Michak of the Journal Inquirer:
‘DEATH CLAUSES’: Talent contracts release WWE from liability in wrestlers’ deaths; McMahon camp defends pacts, including one she signed personally
The father of a three-time champion wrestler for World Wrestling Entertainment Inc., the company owned and formerly headed by Republican U.S. Senate candidate Linda McMahon, said Thursday that he was flabbergasted to learn after his son’s suicide that his contract with WWE contained a so-called “death clause.”
Read more.

posted by: hawkeye | September 5, 2010  12:43pm

LOTHAR:
  Don’t brag about Obama’s Health Care. IT’S A LOSER, THAT PEOPLE DID NOT WANT. Obama shoved it down the public’s throats, through his captive Democratic Congress, and they will pay for their obedience to Obama, starting on Nov. 2, when they will be voted out of office.

Your copy quote by another writer, slanted against Linda McMahon, means you are lost for worthwhile rhetoric—reflected by your writings…........

posted by: Adamec | September 6, 2010  7:09pm

McMahon:

“We’re going to have to strengthen our entitlement programs because we have a contract with our seniors,”

Consider that this is from someone who does not have to contribute to her wrestler’s retirement since they are independent subcontractors and not employees.

A contract or subcontract? That is the question.

Is she going to hand seniors a 1099 and tell them their retirement is their problem?

And then privatize it?

posted by: hawkeye | September 7, 2010  8:25am

mpalmer:

Which Richard Blumenthal, Democratic-Obama, “crystal ball” are you reading, and reciting from/