If this sounds familiar, it should: it’s the same formula the right has been using for a generation. Use identity politics to whip up the base; then, when the election is over, give priority to the concerns of your corporate donors. Run as the candidate of “real Americans,” not those soft-on-terror East coast liberals; then, once you’ve won, declare that you have a mandate to privatize Social Security. It comes as no surprise to learn that American Crossroads, a new organization whose goal is to deploy large amounts of corporate cash on behalf of Republican candidates, is the brainchild of none other than Karl Rove.
Insofar as he is suggesting that Social Security reform was some kind of bait-and-switch, Krugman is completely wrong. Bush first outlined his plan on May 15, 2000.
As for Rove's role, the Wall Street Journal reports:
Republican political strategist Karl Rove and former Republican National Committee Chairman Ed Gillespie are informal advisers to the group American Crossroads. A May 17 U.S. News article about ad spending by political groups incorrectly said that they had set up the group.