These are my links for September 7th from 10:49 to 11:37:
- Rep. Dan Lungren won’t challenge Tom McClintock for Congress – Rep. Dan Lungren has decided against challenging fellow Republican Congressman Tom McClintock and instead will run in what is a swing district that extends from Elk Grove to Folsom, his campaign manager said today.
"Unless something changes, he will run in the 7th Congressional District and is confident in doing so," Lungren adviser Rob Stutzman told The Bee.
Lungren had toyed with running against McClintock, the more conservative of the two, in the 2012 GOP primary for the 4th Congressional District.
The district where McClintock will be running is among the most conservative in the state. It includes part of Roseville, and stretches from Lake Tahoe south past Yosemite National Park.
By deciding to stay put, Lungren will seek the congressional seat that includes his home in Gold River. If he wins reelection — not a sure thing — he would represent McClintock, whose residence is in Elk Grove.
"Republicans need to focus on holding the House, not necessarily running against each other, which unfortunately is happening elsewhere," Stutzman said.
Lungren won reelection last year against Democratic physician Ami Bera. Bera, a proven fund-raiser, is planning to run again.
- Does Rick Perry have a Social Security problem? – Perry has a couple of options here. He can disclaim his prior suggestion to send Social Security to the states, but stick by his statement that Social Security is not sustainable. That would require presenting something more detailed than his campaign line that we should all have a ”conversation” about Social Security. Another approach would be to stick with his call for a radical reworking or end to federal retirement benefits. That too would require a full plan and plenty of assurance that he’s not going to relegate grandma to eating cat food in her old age. Perry’s campaign has not yet responded to my request for comment.
There is plenty of room for smart talk on Social Security. Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) sets forth some solid suggestions in his Roadmap for America. Perry will need to show he has a serious plan as well — or maybe even to adopt Ryan’s ideas in total.
Rove is right about one thing: Even for Republicans, the idea of ending Social Security is going to be a tough sell.
UPDATED AT 1:34 P.M.
A Perry spokesman e-mails me: “We realize entitlement reform is a politically touchy subject, but it must be discussed if America is serious about fiscal responsibility and economic growth. At the rate they are going, many federal entitlement programs will be unsustainable, unaffordable and unavailable for future generations. Governor Perry would protect Social Security benefits for those at or near retirement and also recognizes we must discuss changes to make Social Security and other retirement benefits financially sound and viable going forward.”
That doesn’t sound like he’s ready to propose anything specific. We’ll have to see if that will be sufficient to allay concerns he is out to wreck Social Security.
Perry needs a specific proposal like Paul Ryan