Press Release - In Florida, Pawlenty Calls for Entitlement Reform
"Deep in senior-rich Florida, Republican presidential candidate Tim Pawlenty called Tuesday for fundamental changes in Social Security and other entitlement programs he said are not sustainable in their current form.
Pawlenty, a former Minnesota governor positioning himself as the GOP race's blunt talker, said in a Facebook town hall meeting and a session with reporters that if elected he would gradually raise the Social Security retirement age and phase out cost-of-living increases for wealthier recipients. Current retirees and those close to retirement would be unaffected, he said.
"We're here to look them in the eye, and look young people in the eye, and tell them what needs to be done," he said. "These are reasonable things that can be done, but we need to tell the truth about it."
Pawlenty officially entered the race Monday and assured supporters in Des Moines, Iowa, that he would tell hard truths that President Barack Obama would not. One was his opposition to ethanol subsidies, not a popular stand in corn-dependent Iowa. In Florida, his proposals for overhauling entitlement programs aimed at seniors were similarly meant in part to show him as fearless in taking on politically untouchable issues."
Tim Pawlenty, Press Release - In Florida, Pawlenty Calls for Entitlement Reform Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project https://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/node/296588