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DNC to McCain: How You Like Privatization Now?

The DNC is gleefully circulating an AP article that flags another obvious, but important, shortcoming of Sen. John McCain’s domestic platform when viewed under the harsh light of the market crisis.

The Democrats observe: “In an AP article today, Glen Johnson highlights the difficulty John McCain is having trying to explain his long held position in support of George Bush’s failed 2005 privatization of Social Security in the wake of this week’s economic turmoil.”

The article reports that McCain’s privatization position now looks like bad policy and terrible politics:

McCain defends retirement accounts amid stock dive

Wall Street turmoil [left McCain] defending his support for privately investing Social Security money in the same markets that had tanked earlier in the week…. A headline Friday in the Manchester, N.H., Union Leader, the leading paper in that battleground state, underscored the political challenge. “Pension funds for workers take a hit,” read a story about a roughly $500 million decline the past three months in the state’s public pension fund.

McCain counters that he does not support full-bore “privatization.” He has not exactly been pushing the issue at all, recently. Social Security is unlikely to break through as a national campaign issue right now, either, but it could gain traction in swing states with large elderly populations. The Republicans’ old promises to shrink government and ‘Let The Market Decide’ just don’t have the same ring.

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