Kanjorski Campaign asks Barletta to Demand an End to False Ads by Pro-Privatization Group

WILKES-BARRE, PA – Today, a conservative front group that wants to destroy Social Security began airing TV ads lying about Paul Kanjorski’s record in order to help elect Lou Barletta.  The Kanjorski campaign is calling on Lou Barletta to denounce these ads and demand that they be taken off the air.

The group responsible for the ads, 60 Plus Association, is a conservative front group that has long been in the fight to privatize Social Security.  This election cycle, the group is spending over a million dollars to lie to Pennsylvania voters and elect Members of Congress that will aid their pro-privatization agenda.

“Lou Barletta claims he’s against privatization of Social Security, now is his chance to prove it. A pro-privatization group is lying to Pennsylvanians to help Lou Barletta win.  If Lou really opposes privatization, he should denounce these ads and demand that they be stopped immediately,” said Ed Mitchell, the Kanjorski campaign’s spokesperson.

60 Plus Association has a long history of fighting to privatize Social Security.  In December 2001, the 60 Plus Association participated in a news conference sponsored by Americans for Tax Reform that supported the Bush Social Security Commission’s plan to privatize Social Security (Americans for Tax Reform press advisory, 12/11/01).  Jim Martin, head of the 60-Plus Association, has written op-eds for the Washington Times in which he calls Social Security an “antiquated relic of a bygone era” and a “burden” for young workers, advocating for a retirement system which allows young workers to invest a portion of their taxes. (Washington Times, 3/14/01; Washington Times, 8/1/01)

60 Plus Association, which calls itself “non-partisan,” issued a press release in 2001 that called Bush’s first 100 days in office a “golden era for senior citizens,” and appeared in Philadelphia during the Republican National Convention in support of the 2000 GOP ticket. (Palm Beach Post, 6/17/01; National Journal’s Congress Daily, 8/3/01)

“This is a disgusting attempt by an outside group to lie to voters in their quest to destroy Social Security,” said Mitchell.  “Is Lou Barletta going to let voters of the 11th Congressional District be lied to by a group that wants to destroy Social Security, or will he stand up and tell them he no longer wants their help?”

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