I must say I'm a little surprised the AP hasn't followed up on their story claiming that Rep. Heather Wilson (R) of New Mexico is opposed to President Bush's Social Security plan. Wilson is a classic Social Security Switch-hitter. And given what we found out last week, it seems pretty clear that Wilson managed to bamboozle the AP into putting her down as opposing the president when it actually seems she's supporting him.
As we noted last week, Wilson's angle is to say she doesn't support having the government invest Social Security money in the stock market. But to her that doesn't rule out creating private accounts invested in the stock market because that's not the government.
In other words, Wilson is relying on the sort of tactic that usually doesn't pan out for five-year-olds when they try to use it in household cookie-jar theft investigations.
Here are some earlier examples of Wilson's switch-hitting ways ...
"I support innovative approaches that would allow working people to put at least some of their Social Security payments into personalized pension funds."
"In 1998, Wilson advocated "personalized" retirement accounts that would allow people to determine how some of their Social Security contribution is invested. In 2000, Wilson said she wanted to leave Social Security alone but would consider allowing younger workers to invest in the stock market to increase their benefits. Wilson's camp denies Romero's assertion that she favors privatization. 'The fact is,' Wilson said Saturday, 'that I oppose the government's investment into the stock market and oppose privatization.'"
"In the past, Wilson has supported plans to allow individual workers to create 'personal accounts' within Social Security. She is no longer talking about that idea, although she hasn't ruled it out, either."
"If the federal government invests in the stock market, it will overnight become the largest investor in American business, and I don't think that's right."
"During the campaign Wilson said she did not favor privatizing Social Security. She said Thursday she would not vote to reduce benefits for anyone in or nearing retirement, increase payroll taxes or allow the government to invest in the stock market. Instead, she would look at plans to encourage individual investment accounts."