ThinkProgress filed this report from the Republican presidential debate in Simi Valley, California.
Texas Gov. Rick Perry (R) just doesn’t know what to do with his radical book arguing that Social Security and Medicare are unconstitutional. The Perry campaign has alternatively embraced the book, distanced itself from it, run away from voters asking him about it, and misrepresented what it says.
ThinkProgress’ Scott Keyes caught up with Rick Perry’s campaign manager yesterday, and learned that Team Perry is back to simply not telling the truth about what their candidate believes:
KEYES: Does the governor still think that Social Security exists at the expense of the Constitution?
PERRY SPOX: In the book he never said — he didn’t say it was unconstitutional. Is that what you’re getting at?
KEYES: Well, just that he wrote that Social Security exists at the expense of the Constitution.
PERRY SPOX: He believes Social Security is a Ponzi scheme and that we’ve got to address it. We’re starting a national conversation.
For the record, here is the passage in Fed Up! where Rick Perry says that Social Security is unconstitutional:
There is no ambiguity in this passage. Nor is there ambiguity in a subsequent interview where Perry reiterated his belief that Social Security and Medicare violate the Constitution:
I don’t think our founding fathers when they were putting the term “general welfare” in [the Constitution] were thinking about a federally operated program of pensions nor a federally operated program of health care. What they clearly said was that those were issues that the states need to address. Not the federal government. I stand very clear on that.
Simply put, the Perry campaign needs to stop misrepresenting what their candidate believes.