Bush Pushing Social Security Investment Plan

March 1, 2002 (PLANSPONSOR.com) - For the second time in as many days, President Bush pushed the notion of allowing Americans workers to invest part of their Social Security accounts in the stock market.

“You ought to be trusted with your own money,” Bush said to workers at a Des Moines, Iowa  printing business that offers 401(k) plans, according to an Associated Press report. “A 401(k) recognizes who owns the money. Watching that money grow on a tax-free basis makes a lot of sense.”

Bush is talking up his Social Security proposal as pensions and retirement savings are emerging as an issue in this year’s midterm election, courtesy of the Enron Corp. collapse.

Opponents say a change as the one Bush proposes could jeopardize retirement plans of millions at times when the stock market is bad, such as the last 18 months.

The president also called for Congress to make it easier for plan sponsors to offer financial advice to participants “without fear of some junk lawsuit.”

The company Bush visited, The Printer Inc., produces brochures and marketing material. It offers a 401(k) program to its 150 employees.

In his Friday remarks, Bush echoed many of the themes he touched on in a Thursday speech to a retirement savings summit in Washington, DC.