Think Progress caught up with Gov. Rick Perry (R-TX) on the campaign trail in Iowa. A group of Iowan seniors found Perry in front of a store in Iowa City. Perry, who has just announced his presidential candidacy, expressed on more than one occasion that Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid are unconstitutional Ponzi schemes. The group of seniors exercised their own constitutional rights by chanting "Hey, hey, whadya say, stop the corporate giveaways!" One elderly gentleman cried out "You gonna kill Social Security?!? Where'd you read your Constitution?" Needless to say, the constitutionality of Social Security is well established. Around 20% of Iowans receive Social Security, a program they've paid into their entire lives. If Social Security is in any danger, it is because Gov. Perry's predecessor in the Texas Governor's Mansion, George W. Bush, spent trillions on Iraq and Afghanistan and tax cuts for the wealthiest Americans. Despite Bush's irresponsibility, virtually the entire gap in Social Security's longterm projections can be made up by eliminating the regressive cap on the payroll tax. Social Security taxes currently only go up to $106,800 of earnings, meaning that wealthier people pay a lower percentage of taxes than poorer people.
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