Compromise budget proposal was flawed
By Paul Ryan
The fatal flaw of President Obama's fiscal commission is that it left the president's partisan health care law virtually untouched. No solution to our fiscal challenge can afford to ignore the core driver of our debt, which is government spending on health care. And the simple truth is that the president's law accelerates our fiscal day of reckoning by expanding Medicaid, raiding Medicare and creating a brand new health care entitlement program.
Recently my colleagues Steven LaTourette, R-Ohio, and Jim Cooper, D-Tenn., put forward a budget based on the fiscal commission's proposals — and while I appreciate their willingness to put forth solutions, this budget suffers from the same fatal flaw. It fully funds the $1.6 trillion in new spending called for under the president's health care law. It rejects recent bipartisan efforts to save and strengthen Medicare. And it embraces a key Medicare change included in the president's partisan law: the creation of an unaccountable board of 15 unelected bureaucrats empowered to cut Medicare in ways that would lead to denied care for seniors.
Because it fails to reform federal health care programs, their budget requires ever-higher taxation to chase ever-higher government spending. The budget's heavy reliance on tax increases sacrifices economic growth only to fuel unsustainable government spending. Despite taking $1.8 trillion in higher taxes from hardworking families, their budget never balances, ever.
America needs serious responses to avert a debt-fueled economic crisis. I appreciate my colleagues' efforts to advance the debate. But the Republicans' Path to Prosperity budget that passed the House last week represents the only plan that lifts the debt, advances bipartisan, patient-centered health care solutions, and promotes economic growth to keep the promise of ensuring that our children inherit a stronger America than the one our parents gave us.
Rep. Paul Ryan, R-Wis., is chairman of the House Budget Committee. This article was published and distributed by USA Today.