GOP Lawmaker: Trump Said He Would Go After Social Security ‘The First Day Of His Second Term’
President Trump told a Republican member of Congress that he wants to dismantle Social Security and other entitlement programs, but he would not do it until “the first day of his second term.”
The lawmaker spoke to a small group of reporters Thursday about a wide range of subjects on a condition of anonymity, according to Business Insider. The member said both parties and past administrations are to blame for the lack of effort to reform entitlements, citing a gap in leadership on the issue.
“Until you have an administration willing to actually tackle entitlement reform, the idea that Congress is just going to magically produce it on its own,” said the lawmaker. “Entitlement reform always takes leadership at the presidential level and it also takes — by the way, real reform takes bipartisanship.”
“Look, I’m not trying to cast blame,” the Republican lawmaker said. “Nobody’s gotten serious about entitlement reform. So if we’re worried about the debt in 10 years, when we get serious about entitlement reform, then I’ll know we’re serious about the debt. Otherwise it’s a talking point issue back and forth.”
When asked about Trump’s level of serious on the issue, the Republican said the president would not go after Social Security “until the first day of his second term, he told me.”
House Speaker Paul Ryan has expressed interest in entitlement reforms as soon as 2018, but the lawmaker noted the political risks of going after entitlements in a contentious election such as 2018.
“I think doing it in an election year is hard,” the Republican member of Congress said. “There’s a reason why Social Security reform happened in 1983, not 1984.”
it’s ironic that Republicans are expressing concern about the national debt after they approved a massive tax cut to corporations that will add $1trillion t the deficit.
The White House did not respond to a request for comment.