Here's a flashback to Rick Perry dishing his views
on the unconstitutionality of Social Security and Medicare back when he was still ruling out the possibility of running for President:
ANDREW ROMANO: The Constitution says that “the Congress shall have Power To lay and collect Taxes… to provide for the… general Welfare of the United States.” But I noticed that when you quoted this section on page 116, you left “general welfare” out and put an ellipsis in its place. Progressives would say that “general welfare” includes things like Social Security or Medicare—that it gives the government the flexibility to tackle more than just the basic responsibilities laid out explicitly in our founding document. What does “general welfare” mean to you?
RICK PERRY: I don’t think our founding fathers when they were putting the term “general welfare” in there 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.
So is Rick Perry just making an academic point about his view of the Constitution, or does he believe it's realistic that conservatives like him should actually try to repeal Social Security and Medicare?
ANDREW ROMANO: But the larger question that I’m trying to get it is whether it’s even possible to be your kind of conservative—the kind of conservative you’re advocating for in this book—if you’re working in Washington. Because in theory, Reagan was your kind of conservative, and yet government grew when he was in office. Can conservatives actually reverse the last 75 years of federal policy?
RICK PERRY: Sure. Absolutely they can. We just have to be principled and disciplined and learn how to say no. The idea that you can’t put the genie back in the bottle is not correct. I don’t subscribe to it. It takes people who will say no to special interests and no to new spending, and say yes to allowing the states to be more in control of their futures.
So once he repeals Social Security and Medicare, how will he deal with the extraordinary rise in senior poverty? He offered a hint in May:
“I think it’s time for us to just hand it over to God, and say, ‘God: You’re going to have to fix this,’” he said in a speech in May, explaining how some of the nation’s most serious problems could be solved.
Well that's a great plan. Destroy a system that works...and then ask God to come clean up the mess you just created.
Maybe, instead, Rick should just go back to praying for rain. He'll do less damage that way, and eventually he'll get it.