President Obama and other Democratic leaders stand steadfast against a Republican effort to privatize Social Security. Trouble is, there appears to be no such Republican effort. Obama got nailed on this by FactCheck.org, the politically neutral "truth squad." They said Obama's charges about Republican designs are flat-out "false."
FactCheck noted that even George W. Bush's plan was for only partial privatization, which strikes me as a pissant point. They are on firmer ground in asking for evidence of this alleged current Republican perfidy. There basically is none. You will not find more than one or two of the 535 Republicans in Congress who have anything nice at all to say about privatizing social security. To do so would be to violate the motto of Republicans in the 111th Congress: "Oppose everything. Propose nothing."
Stop for a moment and consider how remarkable this is. A major policy initiative by a Republican president, and a few years later you can search high and low and not find a Republican politician who will publicly support it. When Bush first proposed the idea, it was Topic A for quite a while and I seem to recall no dearth of GOP voices saying what a great idea it was. In fact, here is a passage from the 2004 Republican platform, the one on which George W. Bush ran for re-election:
Personal retirement accounts must be the cornerstone of strengthening and enhancing Social Security. Each of today’s workers should be free to direct a portion of their payroll taxes to personal investments for their retirement. It is crucial that individuals be offered a variety of investment alternatives and that detailed information be provided to each participant to help them judge the risks and benefits of each plan.
Time goes on, people change, I get that. But the rapid slide of Social Security privatization from a top Republican priority to something no Republican would be caught dead supporting is still pretty funny.