Mon 11 Mar, 2013 07:32 pm
Once again, the house will probably be passing another budget, and will ask why Obama has not passed one. But consider the following.
Tomorrow, Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI) will release the latest version of his infamous Republican budget plan — you know, the one that ends Medicare as we know it. As we await this plan, it’s worth considering a few things that voters did not choose in the 2012 election.
Paul Ryan: In selecting Ryan as his running mate, Mitt Romney put Ryan and his ideas front-and-center in the election. Voters said thanks but no thanks to Ryan and his radical ideas. Ryan even lost his hometown of Janesville, Wisconsin.
A Republican House of Representatives: President Obama was easily re-elected and Democrats expanded their majority in the Senate, so why are we stuck with a GOP-controlled House of Representatives? Gerrymandering. Democratic House candidates won more than a million more votes than Republican candidates, but districts drawn by Republicans for Republicans allowed the GOP to hold on to their majority. This isn’t even disputed by the Republicans. In fact, they brag about it.
The Middle Class Footing the Bill: The centerpiece of Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan’s economic proposal was a tax plan that raised taxes on the poor and middle class in order to slash taxes for the wealthy. By contrast, President Obama proposed raising taxes on the wealthiest Americans. The GOP budget’s tax proposals is nearly identical to the Romney-Ryan plan rejected by voters in November.
Ending Medicare: Mitt Romney not only chose Paul Ryan, he wholeheartedly embraced Ryan’s controversial plan to end Medicare as we know it and replace it with a voucher system that stands to double seniors’ out-of-pocket health care costs. Romney and Ryan lost key states with senior-heavy populations, including Florida, Pennsylvania, Iowa, and New Hampshire.
Repealing Obamacare: Not only did voters not vote for the team that wanted to repeal Obamacare, Mitt Romney says that the president won because of Obamacare. Nevertheless, the GOP budget plan to be unveiled tomorrow will once again call for repealing Obamacare — except for its $716 BILLION in savings from Medicare. Despite demonizing the president for the cuts throughout the campaign, Ryan’s plan keeps those cuts in order to to pay for new tax breaks for the wealthy and special interests like Big Oil and Wall Street banks.
European-Style Austerity: Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan proposed unrealistic draconian spending cuts, while the president proposed investments that will create jobs now and grow the middle class and our economy over the long run. The American people rejected the former and gave an Electoral College landslide to the latter. Nevertheless, the GOP budget plan will feature the kind of unrealistic draconian spending cuts that will make it impossible to make investments in the middle class.The GOP plan will slow down the economy and kill hundreds of thousands of jobs. It’s the same kind of austerity that has led to shrinking economies and record-high unemployment in Europe. Austerity isn’t working there and it won’t work here.
BOTTOM LINE: Paul Ryan and his policies were soundly rejected by voters last November. Instead of doubling down on extreme and unpopular ideas like ending Medicare as we know it and raising taxes on the middle class in order to slash taxes on the wealthy, Republicans should come back to the table and agree to deal with our fiscal challenges in a responsible, balanced manner.
-- Think Progress