What social security bill?
House Speaker J. Dennis Hastert (R-Ill.) told an interviewer it would be difficult to get the House and Senate to pass a Social Security bill this year. Oh yeah, I'm no longer Tom DeLay's bitch.
Hastert Doubtful on Social Security Bill
House Speaker Says That Passage of Legislation This Year May Be Unlikely
By Mike Allen
Washington Post Staff Writer
Friday, April 1, 2005; Page A04
House Speaker J. Dennis Hastert (R-Ill.) has acknowledged that President Bush's call for completion of a Social Security bill this year could be unrealistic and that the legislation might have to wait until 2006.
The president's aides immediately responded by saying Bush is committed to winning passage this year. The White House and Republican congressional leaders have said repeatedly that the proposed restructuring of the retirement system is doomed if it does not pass this year, because it will be even more difficult to get Democratic support in 2006, a midterm election year.
GOP lawmakers have also said Bush needs to sign the bill this year because they want close to a full year before the election to explain what they have done, and for retirees to see they are still getting their checks and scheduled increases.
But Hastert, in an interview to be published today by the National Journal, cast doubt on the ability of Congress to deliver on such a rapid schedule. He was asked what his timetable is for completion of a Social Security bill.
"Politically, we probably need to get something done by next spring, a year from now," he said. "You can't carry it right up to an election. That's just political dynamite."
The speaker's assessment reflects the realization by Republican lawmakers that Bush's proposal, featuring individual stock and bond accounts for workers younger than 55, has yet to gain momentum despite weekly barnstorming by Bush.
Please let them bring this up next year, please.
In English, he is saying, never, never, never. We will never bring this up.
posted by Steve @ 12:47:00 AM