DC Politics of Social Security Are Shifting to the Left
Rep. Allyson Schwartz (D-Pa.) signed on as a cosponsor to a bill to increase Social Security benefits one day after a centrist Democratic think tank she is affiliated with slammed the idea in a Wall Street Journal op-ed.
Schwartz, a candidate for Pennsylvania governor, is an honorary co-chair of the think tank, Third Way. She endorsed the Strengthening Social Security Act of 2013on Tuesday, though a spokesman said she had been in contact with the bill’s sponsor since Nov. 22, before the editorial was published. The bill was first introduced on Sept. 17.
For years so called deficit hawks spent hundred of millions trying to create a political climate in Washington that supported cutting Social Security benefits. Their efforts were only halted in no small part thanks to Republicans refusing to raise taxes, but the steady pushback by a range of groups is now paying off.
The ‘grand bargain’ appears dead for the time being and the Overton window shifts steadily to the left. The idea of expanding Social Security benefits is not just being openly discussed but is now seen as a way for politicians to prove they are good Democrats.