Palm Beach Post Feb.

Palm Beach Post, Feb. 5, 2005

Onstage with Bush during his hourlong town hall meeting were five Tampa Bay-area residents ranging from 20-something to retiree. They included 27-year old Jim Browne of St. Petersburg, who said, “Many of my generation do not anticipate Social Security being there.”

To which Bush answered, “When I was 27 years old, I don’t remember anybody talking about whether the system is going to be there.”

USAToday, July 28, <$NoAd$> 2000

Bush [then 32] won the primary and, in the general election against Democratic state Sen. Kent Hance, ran on some of the same ideas he promotes today. He supported the 33 1/3% tax cut proposed by Jack Kemp and William Roth. He predicted Social Security would go broke in 10 years and said the system should give people “the chance to invest money the way they feel” is best.

AEI Public Opinion Study, February 3, 2005

Confidence in the future of the Social Security system has been lacking for a long time. A question asked in 1981 shows that only 31 percent had a great deal or a fair amount of confidence that the Social Security system would have enough money to pay benefits after the year 2000! Still, Americans do not see the Social Security system in crisis. They believe it has serious problems.