Top ten Ryan budget reax 

1. Rush Limbaugh: “Folks, its wonderful. Forget all of this that is going on with the remaining budget and continuing resolution for the remainder of this fiscal year …  the budget that will be announced tomorrow by Paul Ryan … substantively it is superb, politically it is brilliant. … Its exactly what the election last November was all about.”

2. The Editors, NRO: “Ryan’s budget proposal for next year is the most ambitious conservative initiative since — well, actually, since ever. … . The purpose of Ryan’s plan is to raise a standard to which Republicans can aspire in 2012. In the best-case scenario, their presidential candidate runs on most of these ideas, the party wins a mandate in the next election, and the work of making the government leaner and more sober can begin in earnest in 2013.”

3. David Brooks: “Today, Paul Ryan, the Republican chairman of the House Budget Committee, is scheduled to release the most comprehensive and most courageous budget reform proposal any of us have seen in our lifetimes. Ryan is expected to leap into the vacuum left by the president’s passivity. The Ryan budget will not be enacted this year, but it will immediately reframe the domestic policy debate.”

4. Kevin D. Williamson, NRO: “The entitlement reforms being proposed by Rep. Paul Ryan are going to be difficult to achieve, and such cuts are inevitably painful. But there is an alternative: We can forgo those painful cuts, and all we have to do in exchange is enact a tax increase — of 88 percent.”

5. Chris Edwards, CATO: “To summarize, Ryan’s budget plan would make crucial reforms to federal health care programs, and it would limit the size of the federal government over the long term. However, his plan would be improved by adopting more cuts and eliminations of agencies in short term, such as those proposed by Senator Rand Paul.”

6. James Capretta, former Associate Director White House OMB: “It is unquestionably the boldest budget plan ever offered (including Reagan’s first budget), focused first and foremost on bringing federal spending commitments into line with the revenue generated from a pro-growth tax system. ... No corner of the budget is spared from scrutiny, including defense. The challenge of unlimited government, and runaway spending, deficits, and debt is immense — but the Ryan plan more than meets it.”

7. The Heritage Foundation: “Although this budget does rein in welfare spending on Medicaid and food stamps, it continues to approach the rest of the $950 billion welfare system in the same piecemeal fashion of the past. More notably, Ryan has not touched Social Security, preferring instead to fast-track solutions outside the budget process. He has also opted to essentially grandfather the grandparents: Benefits for those in or near retirement will not be touched. That also means that spending reductions will come slower than they might otherwise. Will we exempt so many baby boomers from contributing to the most urgent economic problem we face? While it is politically difficult to consider benefit changes for this group, it is virtually impossible to balance the budget within the near term without doing so. This is a discussion we must have as a nation.”

8. Veronica de Rugy, Mercatus: ““While it’s a good start, there are three major problems with the plan. First, it continues the Washington tradition of extending open-ended promises on Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Security to millions of people without paying for them. Second, Medicare will continue to provide health care support to everyone including the richest Americans. Third, the plan introduces some competition between providers but consumers may still be bound to a list of guaranteed coverage options chosen by the government.”

9. Douglas Holtz-Eakin, former Chief Economist for the Council of Economic Advisors: “The House budget proposal is commendable because it addresses the real problem: the structure of the entitlement programs. Under this plan, there is a vision of small, contained government that supports rapid economic growth, is fair to future generations, and restores America’s exceptionalism.”

10. Henry Olson, American Enterprise Institute: “Ryan slyly implied that the president’s budget, by adding trillions of debt without reforming safety net programs, created risk and uncertainty for the very people least able to cope. Ryan presented a stark and simple choice to Americans. Support his budget, and rest assured that the safety net will be there for you for decades to come. Support the president and who knows what will be left over for you. If this message is consistently communicated, it could be a game changer for the GOP.”

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A daily newspaper covering San Francisco, San Mateo County and serving Alameda, Marin and Santa Clara counties.
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