Reaction to Ryan Budget

Reaction to the proposed budget introduced yesterday by House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan was fast and furious and fell along party lines.

The White House slammed the Ryan budget, calling it “a shift of money from the middle class, seniors and lower-income Americans, disabled Americans to the wealthiest Americans” and argued it “draws on the same wrong-headed theory that led to the worst recession of our lifetimes and contributed to the erosion of middle-class security over the last decade.”  Specifically, the White House suggested the GOP plan “would shower the wealthiest few Americans with an average tax cut of at least $150,000, while preserving taxpayer giveaways to oil companies and breaks for Wall Street hedge fund managers” all paid for “by undermining Medicare and the very things we need to grow our economy and the middle class.”

A Wall Street Journal editorial lauds the Ryan plan for “stak[ing] out clear policy differences with the President on taxes and spending” and presenting a “House majority that realizes it has an obligation to reform the listing, unaffordable entitlement state.”  The Washington Post, on the other hand, labels it “dangerous” because it envisions “draconian spending cuts” and a fails to include “a combination of spending cuts and revenue increases.”

According to the left-leaning Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, Ryan’s budget “specifies a long term spending plan under which, by 2050, most of the federal government aside from Social Security, health care and defense would cease to exist” including “everything from veterans’ programs to medical and scientific research, highways, education, nearly all programs for low-income families and individuals other than Medicaid, national parks, border patrols, protection of food safety and the water supply, law enforcement, and the like.”

On the right, the Heritage Foundation praised the Ryan budget for featuring “strong, substantive, market-based reforms to the health entitlements and a solid, growth-oriented tax plan.”

The Tax Policy Center took a more neutral stance, but pointed out that the GOP plan “leaves unanswered some very important questions.” The budget blueprint, for example, “says nothing about payroll taxes or estate taxes, and almost nothing about taxes on capital gains and dividends” and includes no details about which tax deductions would be eliminated or scaled back as part of the GOP’s proposed tax reform.  

See also my previous post on the topic here.