Apr 5 2011
“Representative Ryan’s proposal is partisan and ideological. He provides dramatic tax cuts for the wealthiest, financed by draconian reductions in Medicare and Medicaid. His proposals are unreasonable and unsustainable.
“His plan is most troubling because it lacks balance. A balanced long-term deficit reduction plan would include discretionary spending cuts, including defense; entitlement changes; and tax reform that simplifies the tax code, lowers rates, and raises revenue. That is what the President’s bipartisan Fiscal Commission proposed. Representative Ryan’s plan, on the other hand, fails to include savings in defense and actually reduces revenue. The result is that his plan relies on deep cuts in the safety net for seniors, children, and other vulnerable populations, as well as deep cuts in critical areas like education, which are needed to promote long-term economic growth.
“I am also concerned about his proposals to replace Medicare with a voucher program and to block grant Medicaid. These steps would simply shift costs and increase the number of uninsured. The President’s Fiscal Commission rejected both of these measures and chose instead to build on the savings proposals and delivery system changes in last year’s health reform.
“What is needed is a comprehensive, balanced, and bipartisan plan.
Democrats and Republicans must be willing to move off of their fixed positions
and find common ground.
“I continue to believe the Fiscal Commission plan provides the best way forward. It includes enough deficit reduction – nearly $4 trillion over the next ten years – to make a meaningful change in the nation’s long-term fiscal trajectory. It takes a balanced approach, with savings coming roughly equally from nondefense discretionary spending, defense discretionary spending, mandatory spending, and revenue. And it represents a truly bipartisan approach, with Democrats and Republicans making concessions to reach an agreement. It may be as close as we can get to a middle-ground, consensus solution to the nation’s long-term budget crisis.”
Contact: Stu Nagurka (202) 224-7436
Steve Posner (202) 224-7925
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