Skip to content

Democrats Attack Indiana’s Todd Young on Social Security

Seven-figure DSCC ad buy targets Republican in newly competitive Senate race

Updated:  The Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee is attacking Indiana Republican Senate nominee Todd Young for calling Social Security a “Ponzi scheme” in a seven-figure ad buy debuting Monday.  

The ad, first obtained by Roll Call, will air on broadcast and cable outlets on the first day of the Democratic National Convention.   

The DSCC is boosting former Sen. Evan Bayh, who unexpectedly entered the race earlier this month, making this open-seat race to replace retiring GOP Sen. Dan Coats much more competitive.   

“Todd Young called Medicare and Social Security ‘welfare,'” the ad begins, with a map pointing out that 800,000 Hoosiers depend on Social Security.  

“And in Washington,” the narrator continues, “Young said he was proud to back a plan that meant deep cuts to Social Security … and even called Social Security ‘fatally flawed,’ and a ‘Ponzi scheme.’”  


Democrats to Go on Air with Ads Supporting Bayh


Young’s campaign released a statement tying Bayh to President Barack Obama, Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid and his likely successor, Sen. Charles E. Schumer.

“Before Evan Bayh cashed in as a Washington superlobbyist, he cast the deciding vote for Obamacare, a law that cut Medicare by over $700 billion, and voted for higher taxes on seniors’ Social Security benefits,” Campaign Manager Trevor Foughty wrote. “Todd Young, on the other hand has fought to clean up the the Bayh-Obama mess and voted to preserve programs like Medicare and Social Security. Hoosiers want to change Washington and they won’t be swayed by attacks from Harry Reid and Chuck Schumer who want to protect the rigged system that made Evan Bayh so rich.”

Bayh replaced former Rep. Baron Hill, who’d struggled to raise money, on the Democratic ballot. He started running his own ads just days after entering the race, and with $9 million in his campaign account, he can afford to run plenty more.  


Ratings Change: Indiana Senate Race Now Tilts Democratic


Young ended the second quarter with $1.2 million on hand. He handily defeated fellow GOP Rep. Marlin Stutzman in the state’s May primary. Young is viewed as a strong campaigner, but he ran into trouble in the primary when he almost didn’t qualify for the ballot because of a shortage of ballot signatures.   


How an Establishment Candidate in Indiana Appealed to Trump Voters


Bayh’s entrance into the race prompted The Rothenberg & Gonzales Political Report /Roll Call to change its race rating from Republican Favored to Tilts Democratic .   

This post has been updated to reflect the size of the buy. 

Get breaking news alerts and more from Roll Call on your iPhone or your Android.