During an interview with Fox News’ Neil Cavuto Tuesday, Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker seemed to suggest that, should he be elected president, his birthday would be the dividing line for raising the social security retirement age.
“We’ll talk about reform,” Walker said, “but only for those — I was born on November 2, 1967 — for anybody older than me, we’re not touching social security.”
“People made decisions about their career and their employment,” he continued, “and ultimately their retirement. For people — including me, and younger — yeah, we’re going to have to talk about reforms.”
This felt odd. Why did he mention his birthday? It’s noble that Walker wouldn’t want to grandfather himself into his own entitlement reform policy, but why should November 2, 1967 really be the dividing line? It feels a bit arbitrary and self-centered to suggest that someone born BW (before Walker) gets to collect their benefits years earlier than someone born AW (after Walker).
In fairness, I don’t think Walker really means that his birthday should be the dividing line — even if that’s pretty clearly what he was suggesting. For what it’s worth, Walker went on to add that: “Should we run [question: Who are we????], we’ll weigh out specifics on that. But I think you gotta make a clear distinction between those who are at, or near, retirement, and those in my generation, or younger.”
It’s unclear whether this is an example of Walker being an egomaniac — or just rhetorically sloppy. Or maybe it’s yet another example of yours truly being too persnickety. We report, you decide…
UPDATE: A friend and reader suggests this might be the result of Walker wanting to remind people how young he is — a subtle dig at Hillary. That might explain why he would awkwardly try to shoehorn his birthday into the discussion.
— Joshua Mercer (@joshuamercer) June 3, 2015