New Mexico Democrats blasted Gary Johnson, a Libertarian U.S. Senate candidate, for his past support for raising Social Security’s retirement age.
Johnson, a former New Mexico governor and two-time Libertarian presidential candidate, is challenging Sen. Martin Heinrich (D), who is running for a second term.
In a July 2016 interview with The Washington Examiner while Johnson was running for president, he said he supported raising Social Security’s retirement age in order to shore up the program’s finances. And in a 2011 interview with Fox Business’ John Stossel, Johnson specified that he was willing to raise the age for full benefits to 72. (Currently the minimum age for full benefits is in the process of rising to 67.)
Marg Elliston, the chairwoman of the state’s Democratic Party, slammed the stance, noting that Johnson, 65, receives $17,760 a year from a state pension fund, according to his personal financial disclosure.
“Gary Johnson has been taking his government pension since he turned 65, but he wants to raise the retirement age by seven years? What a hypocrite,” she said. “Working New Mexicans have paid into this program for generations and don’t need an out of touch millionaire fighting to deny them their earned benefits.”
Johnson stands by his belief that the federal government must reduce Social Security benefits and possibly increase the minimum retirement age, according to Johnson campaign spokesman Joe Hunter.
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