A top GOPer is joining liberals in attacking the president for proposing cuts to Social Security–the trouble is, it’s a Republican idea.
Oregon Republican Rep. Greg Walden, chair of National Republican Congressional Committee, denounced the president’s budget on Wednesday for its “shocking attack on seniors.”
Morning Joe host Joe Scarborough slammed Walden for chastising Obama’s move to the middle budget compromise.
“If [GOP leadership] do not say that Greg Walden is wrong and this is not the position of the House Leadership and not the policy of the head of the NRCC and they are going to discourage their candidates from doing this, I think the president should walk away,” Scarborough said. “This is shameful. I cannot condemn this enough. I’m going to be as tough on this issue as I’ve been on the president for not having the courage to talk about entitlements.”
The president’s budget proposed ‘chained CPI’: a lower measure of inflation in adjusting Social Security benefits to the cost-of-living, which effectively implements cuts to the program long-term. Chained CPI was originally a Republican policy; the White House adopted it at their suggestion, as a concession.
“We’ve been busting his chops, the president, for months—put it out there, be responsible—the president is finally, he just dips his toe in the water and Greg Walden comes out swinging,” Scarborough said. “It’s shameless.”
NBC Chief White House Correspondent Chuck Todd suggested Republicans’ criticism may stem from the way such entitlement cuts poll with the public.
“They’re looking at polls and this is really unpopular,” Todd said.
He added that the White House couldn’t be blamed for walking away, “If Republicans who want to deal with the president don’t condemn Walden publicly.”