And after calling the 21st Century Contract with America "probably the most thorough campaign document ever," Ferrara writes:
Gingrich proposes freedom for younger workers to choose to save and invest at least part of what they would otherwise pay in payroll or income taxes into personal savings, investment and insurance accounts. Over an entire working career, at just standard, long term, market investment returns, workers of all family combinations and income levels would accumulate several hundred thousand dollars in these accounts after inflation, approaching a million dollars or even more in some cases depending on how big the option is over their careers.Further:
Those accumulated funds would pay all workers of all income levels much higher benefits than Social Security even promises let alone what it could pay. Retirees would each be free to choose to leave any portion of these funds to their children at death.
Gingrich's explicit long-term vision is to expand these accounts over time so they ultimately finance all of the benefits now financed by the payroll tax, eventually allowing that tax to be phased out entirely. That would be the greatest reduction in taxes in world history. The debate audience expressed strong enthusiasm for such personal accounts.On block granting welfare programs back to the states:
Gingrich also drew attention to an historic turning point in welfare policy that was achieved while he was Speaker, with the enormously successful 1996 reforms of the old Aid to Families with Dependent Children (AFDC) program. Those reforms implemented the ultimate welfare policies favored by President Reagan and his long time welfare guru Robert Carleson.On health care, Ferrara writes:
Gingrich proposed, with assent from Cain, to extend the same reforms to all remaining federal means-tested welfare programs. This would amount to sending welfare back to the states, achieving the complete welfare reform dream of Reagan and Carleson in restoring the original federalism and state control over welfare. It also follows the spirit of the Tea Party in restoring power to the states and gaining control over government spending, deficits and debt. The audience at the debate expressed strong support for this as well.
With all the programs of the current welfare empire estimated together to cost $10 trillion over the next 10 years, the resulting savings to the taxpayers from these reforms would be several trillion just in those first 10 years alone, as the 1996 reforms indicate.
Gingrich proposes that the problem of the uninsured can and should be solved through a health care safety net focused on the truly needy, assuring that no one will suffer lack of essential health care, for just a small fraction of the cost of Obamacare. He explains that this can and should be accomplished with no individual mandate and no employer mandate.On health savings accounts: "Gingrich pioneered HSA legislation while Speaker, and explicitly favors extending them throughout the health care system."
That would begin by block granting Medicaid to the states as above, which Gingrich and Cain both strongly supported.
On Paul Ryan's plan:
Gingrich also explicitly favored the Ryan plan for Medicare, if it is offered as a free choice for seniors, rather than a mandatory imposed change. With such freedom alone, seniors will be fleeing old Medicare, butchered by Obamacare cuts to payments to doctors and hospitals, and the further cuts and rationing imposed by the Independent Payment Advisory Board. The Gingrich plan also involves eventually a personal account for the Medicare payroll tax, which would finance a private sector annuity in retirement providing further funds to buy private insurance, besides Ryan's premium support.You can read the rest of the article, which is great good, here.