“What this legislation will do will be simply to save the pension system for all of those retirees and public workers who are counting on it,” Christie said. “The only way to do that is to control spending -- there is no magic wand. But affordability comes at a price: There are choices to be made and sacrifices to share." [emphasis mine]We teachers and cops and firefighters and social workers and nurses and DPW workers and everyone else has to "sacrifice," or our pensions were going to disappear. Straight-shootin' Chris was just telling us saps the truth we had been denied for so long:
Sure, we'd be paying another 2% of our paychecks into the system, and the state wouldn't be making full payments on its share for another seven years, and he was breaking an explicit contract (which has led to the inevitable lawsuits - no wonder he wants to change the court, and fast), and he was eliminating cost of living increases for many elderly who had worked hard their whole lives for that benefit... but he was going to save the pension! Wouldn't you rather have half a loaf than no loaf? Wasn't it worth it?At a town hall-style meeting in Camden County, Christie Tuesday said the state has to make its pension plans "more solvent and more honest," and argued the changes are necessary to protect pensions for workers before the system collapses."I’m saving their pension, that’s what I’m doing to the mid-career public employee," Christie said. "There may be some public employees right now who don’t like me because I’m prescribing tough medicine. But when the pension system gets well in a decade, I’m going to be their favorite governor. I’ll wait to get the thank-you notes then." [emphasis mine]
Does anyone believe the funds are going to beat 8.25% any time soon?
Chris Christie broke explicit promises to public workers and retirees, and he broke his campaign promises. And his entire rationale - that he was "saving" the pensions - is now exposed as a complete farce. Saving the pensions requires that the state make its contributions; Christie is clearly blowing that off until he's out of office.
As I've said, pensions save taxpayers money. But a new generation of workers interested in public service are looking at the way this man blithely broke a contract with public workers. Do you think they will trust government pension promises after this?
This man is a human train wreck. He is a political and fiscal Godzilla, wreaking destruction across the state that will take decades to clean up. What's worse, he does so while a compliant, ill-informed, and often just plain stupid press cheers from the side.
This state is in for a bad few years, and it will all be on the head of Christie and the people who refused to hold him to account. Hunker down.