COMMENTARY | Rep. Paul Ryan of Wisconsin officially joined the Mitt Romney campaign Saturday, giving the “Don’t get specific” candidate a running mate with a highly specific budget plan that must now be sold to voters.
Already cursed with the charisma of cardboard, Romney’s now attached to America’s support for the Ryan budget, which isn’t friendly to lower-income brackets, according to the Center for Budget and Policy Priorities.
The CBPP analysis of Ryan’s “Path to Prosperity” budget plan found that among other things, it gets 62 percent of its spending cuts by slashing low-income programs and tax credits.
Rich Lowry, editor of the National Review magazine attempted to characterize the Ryan budget as a moderate proposal similar to the 2010 Bowles-Simpson deficit reduction plan, according to ThinkProgress.
While both plans want an across-the-board tax cut, the similarities stop there, as Forbes Magazine points out.
In a nutshell, Bowles-Simpson was a $1 trillion tax increase for all income levels that aimed to trim the deficit through measures like eliminating tax breaks for capital gains, stock dividends, and other incomes typically associated with high-income homes.
The Ryan budget, on the other hand, is strictly opposed to any deficit-fighting tax hikes and wants drastically lower tax rates for top earners and corporations. Furthermore, it contains no clear guidelines for what high-income tax shelters will be removed but is unambiguous about plans to strengthen them by lowering tax on capital gains, stock dividends and, for some reason, profit earned offshore or overseas.
While it’s technically still the Ryan budget, picking the Wisconsin deficit hawk has married Romney to America’s support for Path to Prosperity. It’s a more extreme version of his own budget, which he has publicly voiced his support for at least five times according to ThinkProgress. Enough to convince voters they’ll be voting for or against the Romney-Ryan budget plan.
Just prior to Ryan joining the ticket, the Wall Street Journal responded to the Obama administration’s ‘Romney Hood’ attack slogan. They believe Romney’s planned 20 percent across-the-board tax cut insulates his plan from critics — among whom are the Tax Policy Center — who say it’s a tax increase for middle-class families. But that argument is moot with the Ryan budget now on the ticket.
The Journal further claimed that the only critics of Romney’s plan would be liberals who want to redistribute wealth rather than grow the economy. If you find this statement a bit oxymoronic, you’re not alone.
By the Journal’s logic it’s not building a strong team if you make sure you have a lot of good players instead of hoping a few great ones can carry the dead weight.
But if wanting to grow the economy by having money more evenly distributed across the country, instead of staying unequally concentrated like it is now, is a goal for leftist liberals only; then what is a conservative hero like Paul Ryan and his Path to Prosperity trying to do?