Paul Ryan

Rand Paul Wins CPAC Presidential Straw Poll

Rand Paul

Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY), who gave one of the most anticipated speeches at CPAC, has won a plurality of the gathering’s annual presidential straw poll, finishing just ahead of his colleague, Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL).

CPAC Presidential Straw Poll Results

According to CPAC, 52% of those who participated in the straw poll were between the age of 18 to 25, which highlights the growth of the youth participation. One would surmise that the liberty movement had a lot to do with this. Also, the poll found that 68% prefer targeted spending cuts to across-the-board cuts and an “overwhelming majority” oppose use of drones for strikes or spying.

Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) is giving the keynote speech at this moment, which will close out CPAC for 2013. You can view the full results of the straw poll, including the survey questions asked of attendees, in the embed below. The takeaway is that there is a shift coming and it’s undeniable.

CPAC Straw Poll 2013

Watch CPAC 2013 Live — Video of McConnell and Ryan’s Speeches

Paul Ryan speaks at CPAC

If you couldn’t make it to CPAC 2013, you can watch it live via stream provided by PBS NewsHour. Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) and House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan (R-WI), and NRA Chairman Wayne LaPierre have already spoken this morning. You can watch McConnell and Ryan’s speeches below.

Former Sen. Rick Santorum (R-PA), 2012 GOP Presidential nominee Mitt Romney, Rep. Steve Scalise (R-LA), Gov. Bobby Jindal (R-LA), Rep. Tim Huelskamp (R-KS), and House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-VA),  are slated to speak early this afternoon.

During his speech this morning, Minority Leader McConnell vowed to repeal ObamaCare and slammed the budget produced by Senate Democrats:

Chairman Ryan spoke about the fiscal issues facing the country. He dropped a line that was tweeted like crazy. Ryan said, “This has been a really big week. We got white smoke from the Vatican, and we got a budget from the Senate. But when you read it, you find the Vatican’s not the only place blowing smoke this week.”

Senate Democrats Release Budget, Unveil $1 Trillion Tax Hike

Patty Murray

The budget battle is taking shape. On one hand you have a budget proposal from House Republicans that takes steps to deal with entitlement reform and balance nation’s finances in 10 years and on the other you have Senate Democrats pushing for nearly $1 trillion tax hike and a perpetually unbalanced budget:

The first budget from Senate Democrats in four years includes nearly $1 trillion in new taxes but would not balance the budget.

The blueprint unveiled by Senate Budget Committee Chairwoman Patty Murray (D-Wash.) on Tuesday to her Democratic colleagues would also turn off the next nine years of the sequester and replace those spending cuts with a 50-50 mix of tax increases and spending cuts.

The budget would dedicate $100 billion to economic stimulus in the form of infrastructure spending and job training.

While Rep. Ryan’s imperfect, but respectable budget would trim $4.6 trillion from budget deficits over the next decade, Sen. Murray’s proposal would only trim $1.85 trillion over that same timeframe. Sen. Murray’s budget would raise tax revenue by closing tax loopholes. That would be good, broad-based tax policy, provided that the increased revenues are used to lower overall tax rates.

Everything You Need to Know About the Ryan Budget

Written by Daniel J. Mitchell, a senior fellow at the Cato Institute. Posted with permission from Cato @ Liberty.

Sigh. Even when they’re sort of doing the right thing, Republicans are incapable of using the right argument.

Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI), chairman of the House Budget Committee, has unveiled his proposed budget and he and other Republicans are bragging that the plan will balance the budget in 10 years.

That’s all fine and well, but good fiscal policy is achieved by reducing the burden of government spending, and that means restraining the budget so that federal outlays grow slower than the private sector.

It’s good to balance the budget, of course, but that should be a secondary goal.

Now for the good news. The Ryan Budget does satisfy the Golden Rule of fiscal policy. As you can see in the chart, federal spending grows by an average of 3.4 percent annually, and that modest bit of fiscal discipline is enough to reduce the burden of government spending to 19.1 percent of economic output by 2023.

House Republicans Unveil New Budget Blueprint

Paul Ryan

House Republicans have begun the roll out their new budget, which, like their previous budgets, aims to reduce the national debt and tackle entitlement reform. House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan (R-WI) previewed his budget plan this weekend on Fox News Sunday and this morning in the Wall Street Journal:

America’s national debt is over $16 trillion. Yet Washington can’t figure out how to cut $85 billion—or just 2% of the federal budget—without resorting to arbitrary, across-the-board cuts. Clearly, the budget process is broken. In four of the past five years, the president has missed his budget deadline. Senate Democrats haven’t passed a budget in over 1,400 days. By refusing to tackle the drivers of the nation’s debt—or simply to write a budget—Washington lurches from crisis to crisis.

House Republicans have a plan to change course. On Tuesday, we’re introducing a budget that balances in 10 years—without raising taxes. How do we do it? We stop spending money the government doesn’t have. Historically, Americans have paid a little less than one-fifth of their income in taxes to the federal government each year. But the government has spent more.

So our budget matches spending with income. Under our proposal, the government spends no more than it collects in revenue—or 19.1% of gross domestic product each year. As a result, we’ll spend $4.6 trillion less over the next decade.

House Republicans will unsurprisingly cave on the debt ceiling

Paul Ryan

House Republicans are at a retreat in Williamsburg, Virginia for a few days this week hoping to find a strategy that will help the rebuild before the 2014 election and deal with President Obama during his second term.

Perhaps one of the biggest rumors that has come out of the retreat — noted yesterday afternoon on Twitter by Erick Erickson — is word that they will not put up a fight on raising the debt ceiling, which is set to be reached at some point in mid-February.

While he wasn’t that straightforward in comments to the media yesterday, House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan (R-WI), who has urged unity from his party on fiscal issues, said that a short-term hike would be passed if a large agreement on spending couldn’t be reach with the White House:

“We’re discussing the possible virtue of a short-term debt limit extension so that we have a better chance of getting the Senate and the White House involved in discussions in March,” Ryan told reporters gathered at the pricey Kingsmill resort in Williamsburg, where the House GOP is holding its annual retreat.

White House to miss budget deadline

Barack Obama

Buried in yesterday’s news of President Obama’s press conference, where he brow beat Republicans over the debt ceiling and called for even more tax revenue, was word that the White House would break the law by not submitting a budget for FY 2014 to House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan (R-WI) by the required date:

The White House has informed House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) that it will miss the legal deadline for sending a budget to Congress.

Acting Budget Director Jeff Zients told Ryan (R-Wis.) in a letter late Friday that the budget will not be delivered by Feb. 4, as required by law.

In the letter, Zients says the administration is “working diligently on our budget request.”

The letter blames the late passage of the “fiscal cliff” deal for the delay, saying that because tax and spending issues were not resolved until Jan. 2, “the administration was forced to delay some of its FY 2014 budget preparations, which in turn will delay the budget’s submission to Congress.”

“We will submit it to Congress as soon as possible,” Zients writes.

The Hill notes that, since taking office, the White House has met the deadline only one time. The last time Congress passed a budget was April 29, 2009, which was also the first year of Obama’s administration. And while the White House likes to blame Republicans for the impasse, Obama couldn’t even get a budget through in 2010 when Democrats had complete control of Congress.

It’s time to separate “rhetorical Paul Ryan” from “actual Paul Ryan”

Paul Ryan

The “fiscal cliff” battle is over. Republicans lost, save getting the threshold for taxes increased to $400,000 for individuals and $450,000 for families. The talking point coming from Speaker John Boehner, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, and a host of other Republicans who voted for the deal is that they’re done negotiating with the White House and will leverage the upcoming debt ceiling fight for spending cuts.

Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI), who chairs the House Budget Committee, also said something similar last week when asked about his vote for the “fiscal cliff” deal:

Wisconsin Rep. Paul Ryan on Thursday defended his vote for the last minute fiscal cliff legislation that passed Congress this week, saying he supported it to “get this issue behind us, … prevent this massive tax increase and … focus on spending now.”

The 2012 Republican vice presidential nominee acknowledged in an interview with a Milwaukee radio host that he realized he would be criticized for his vote to extend tax cuts for most Americans while raising taxes on the wealthy, but said it was the best deal Republicans could get under the circumstances.

“What I know in my conscience is 98 percent of the families in Wisconsin are not going to get hit with a massive tax increase,” Ryan said Thursday, during an appearance on 620 WTMJ with Charlie Sykes.

Conservatives Bash Boehner Over Purge…But What About Paul Ryan?

Written by Tad DeHaven, a budget analyst at the Cato Institute. Posted with permission from Cato @ Liberty.

Conservatives are hammering House Speaker John Boehner over the purging of reliably limited government Republicans who weren’t afraid to buck the GOP leadership. But what about Paul Ryan?

There were two Republicans on the House Budget Committee – chaired by Ryan – who voted against Ryan’s budget last spring: Rep. Justin Amash and Rep. Tim Huelskamp. Amash and Huelskamp were just kicked off the Budget Committee, which Ryan is going to continue to chair.

Now consider this quote from an unnamed House GOP leadership aid as reported by The Hill: “Changes are made for a variety of reasons, most often at the request of committee chairs.” That makes it pretty clear that Ryan played a role – if not the role – in getting rid of Amash and Huelskamp. Yet – to my knowledge – conservatives haven’t trained any of their fire on Ryan.

How come?

Tom Price loses Republican leadership bid

Tom Price

As you may have heard, House Republicans met yesterday to elect leadership for the next Congress. While mostly mundane, such as the re-election of John Boehner for House Speaker, there was an interesting race between Rep. Tom Price (R-GA) and Rep. Cathy McMorris Rogers for chair of the House Republican Conference, an important position that helps communicate the party’s message.

Earlier this week, it was reported that Boehner had offered Rep. Tom Price (R-GA) a deal that would have provided him an appointed leadership position in exchange for him dropping out of the race and pledging loyalty to GOP leadership in the House. Price, one of the more conservative members in the caucus, declined the offer.

Unfortunately, whatever hope conservatives had for a seat in House leadership was ended yesterday as Rogers defeated Price, ensuring an echo-chamber for Boehner in leadership and a sign that House Republicans are willing to deal with Obama.

Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI), who chairs the House Budget Committee and is a popular figure in the  conservative movement, reiterated his support for Price in a letter to colleagues. Now, some may dismiss the significance, but Ryan’s involvement made this more than a leadership race between two members, but also against two high-profile Republicans with differing views on how to approach negotiation on the “fiscal cliff” with the White House.

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