Ryan talks debt ceiling
July 20th, 2011
03:33 PM ET
3 years ago

Ryan talks debt ceiling

Editor's Note: CNN's Chief Political Analyst Gloria Borger will have more with Congressman Paul Ryan Wednesday on "The Situation Room" with Wolf Blitzer.

Washington (CNN)
- With the debt ceiling negotiations stuck in a circular loop, Wisconsin Republican Rep. Paul Ryan remains steadfastly opposed to the so-called 'Gang of Six' budget plan-despite the fact that it partly resembles his own budget proposal.

"The virtue of their proposal is that they say you need to lower tax rates for economic growth," Ryan told CNN's Chief Political Analyst Gloria Borger. "The Gang of 6 [plan] is five pages of talking points, it's not an actual plan, what we're looking at as we get into the numbers is – they're not adding up.

"It's a big plan, it's a big idea, we shouldn't cut deals like this in a back room," he said. "We should do it in public, with committee hearings, and amendments…instead of rushing something through in 48 hours which will completely remake all of these plans in government."

Ryan, the House Budget Committee chairman whose proposal has become a target for Democrats, made it clear he does not object to closing tax loopholes.

The issue, he said, is you need to close those tax breaks at the same time congress reforms the tax code.

"We've always said let's close loopholes in order to get tax code more competitive. The problem is if you just take away the loopholes without doing tax reform, then you take away the fiscal space to do tax reform," Ryan said.

"You never do tax reform and then you don't get economic growth. See here's what we're trying to focus on – we want to get this economy growing and get people back to work, and we want to deal with the problem which is spending."

Ryan's view that spending is the culprit is shared by his Republican counterparts-and it's the essence of the debate that has kept the parties from any agreement on raising the debt ceiling.

The GOP view is simple: if you raise revues (that is, taxes) you reduce the need to cut spending. And according to Ryan, Congress needs that pressure.

"Spending has grown – we're seeing spending at rates which we haven't seen since WWII, and so we want to focus on that," Ryan said. "When we go down the tax increase route, you're taking the pressure off of the need to deal with spending," he said.

The House passed a bill on Tuesday that promised to cut and cap spending-with a promise to balance the budget without relying on tax increases.

"We had a 'Gang of 234' members of Congress put legislation on the floor," he said, acknowledging that the measure is not going anywhere in the Senate.

"If we gauge ourselves by, 'will it go anywhere or will it not go anywhere?,' then we'll never get anything done," he said. "I think it's important to put up ideas and put up plans."

And so far, that's all congress has done.


Filed under: Congress • Debt • Deficit • Paul Ryan
soundoff (35 Responses)
  1. Scott

    We've already seen how this clown does arithmatic...

    July 20, 2011 03:39 pm at 3:39 pm |
  2. Claudia, Houston, Tx

    Americans won't be fooled by any proposal that comes from Ryan, he's made it very clear what his intentions are for seniors, children, disabled, veterans, etc. and they aren't good.

    July 20, 2011 03:39 pm at 3:39 pm |
  3. sonny chapman

    All Repub. theories on Economic Laws were blown out of the water by the Clinton Economy. A 39% Income Tax Rate & 22 MILLION new jobs created.

    July 20, 2011 03:45 pm at 3:45 pm |
  4. Billy

    Ryan would balance the budget on the middle class while giving tax cuts to the super-rich. Period.

    July 20, 2011 03:45 pm at 3:45 pm |
  5. Republican Robber Baron

    The Gang of 6 plan is the Ryan plan on steroids. It is a complete sell-out of the middle class to allow the Rich and Powerful to continue to exploit the masses so they can continue to get even more powerful at our expense. Don't like Slimy Vultures like Ryan sell us out and cut our Entitlements. SS and Medicare are already barely enough to survive on – don't let them stick a dagger in our backs.

    July 20, 2011 03:46 pm at 3:46 pm |
  6. Warforprofit

    When will Paul Ryan understand that congress isn't Burger King, you don't get to have it your way. There are 400 other representatives in the room that have as much power as he does. His constituents do not get to make choices for the other 400 million people in the country. We all make decisions together.

    July 20, 2011 03:47 pm at 3:47 pm |
  7. CandyBee

    I wish this guy would just stop showboating and get down to business. He is a politician of the worst sort. Fog and confuse and then make it sound like you are doing the right thing for the country. This man is all about himself, so every day his name and face are in the news is a good day for him, no matter what is happening in the country or the world. I really hope he doesn't get re-elected. We need congressional workers with good judgement, and the good of the country at heart. He doesn't meet the criteria.

    July 20, 2011 03:47 pm at 3:47 pm |
  8. The Greedy Old Pigs have declared class war on US!

    Oh look, one of the GOBP's head vampires is back. I live the way he keeps repeating "tax reform – economic growth" is if trying to hypnotize America. The fact is, certain types of tax reform will help growth, certain types will not, and still others will be essentially neutral. However, the teatards are about catchphrases, not facts, so I don't expect any explanations from Ryan. The American public and the media, however, should be demanding them. His "plan" is an abomination based on false math and assumption that have never occurred before in history. He's quite insane, actually.

    July 20, 2011 03:49 pm at 3:49 pm |
  9. Embarrased Conservative

    Why would anyone listen to what this guy has to say at this point. More embarrasment from my party.

    July 20, 2011 03:50 pm at 3:50 pm |
  10. terry,va

    No wonder Obummie likes the gang of six. It is 5 pages of talking points with no specifics. Where are the CBO numbers on this talking point piece of crap? I say nothing goes through without specific language and scored by the CBO. Tired of all the smoke and mirrors by Obummie and his gang of fools including 3 spineless Repubs. Remember the last thing Obummie and the dumbocraps did behind closed doors and rammed it through?.....Obummiecare. Enough said.

    July 20, 2011 03:55 pm at 3:55 pm |
  11. The Real Tom Paine

    Five pages? By GOP intellectual standards, thats huge. I still remember the GOP offering an alternative to HVR that was less than 20, and consisted of nothing more than talking points. Ryan is lying when he said they were looking at tax reform, since tax reform would have to result in an increase in revenue, and we all know Ryan won't do that. His goal is to starve government as per his master Grover Norquist's pledge, the one exception being the military.

    July 20, 2011 03:56 pm at 3:56 pm |
  12. Four and The Door

    Ryan said. "When we go down the tax increase route, you're taking the pressure off of the need to deal with spending," he said.
    ___________________________________________________________________________________________________
    Exactly correct and well put! When you raise taxes, the size of government heads in the wrong direction: larger. It does not help get to a situation where the size of the government is appropriate to the economy. If we are all about balancing, then when the economy gets smaller, the government should cut back too. When the economy is growing then the government can begin to add new programs and do things that require increased spending.

    July 20, 2011 03:56 pm at 3:56 pm |
  13. ST

    Ryan and Eric Cantor are two young men in GOP camp but who really miss wisdom. I do not blame them for this, as wisdom come with time/experience. I wish they could seek advices from their elders, otherwise they will be out of politics no longer as they anticipated!

    July 20, 2011 04:01 pm at 4:01 pm |
  14. GOP = Greed Over People

    "We've always said let's close loopholes in order to get tax code more competitive. The problem is if you just take away the loopholes without doing tax reform, then you take away the fiscal space to do tax reform,"

    Huh? More proof that Palinese is contagious!

    July 20, 2011 04:03 pm at 4:03 pm |
  15. Rudy NYC

    Four wrote:
    ...the challenge for our government is to do what they can to make manufacturing in America a good decision instead of a bad decision. High taxes and excessive regulation have a price.
    -------------
    You misunderstand the manufactuirng problem entirely. Conservative policies have done everything they can to make manufacturing abroad more attractive than manufacturing here.

    If a US company manufactures here, you will have to pay some sort of taxes on it. The same is true if you manufacture abroad; you will pay taxes abroad. So in our infinite wisdom to make companies pay less taxes, we allow companies to deduct *in full* the foreign taxes they pay to those foreign countries.

    Now imagine that. US companies can manufacture items tax-free overseas. US taxpayers pay their foreign taxes for them. The excuse is cheap labor. The reality is cheaper taxes because we pay it for them.

    July 20, 2011 04:06 pm at 4:06 pm |
  16. Bruce

    A deficit is the difference between how much money an entity takes in and what it spends. An entity can slowly decrease its deficit by decreasing it's spending, but an entity can speed up reducing it's deficit by increasing revenue. The revenue must be increased to a level at least equal to the level of revenue the entity was at before it took on more spending. This country spent a lot of money from 2001 until 2008, but it decreased it's revenue significantly. That why the deficit keeps growing. See very simple Mr. Ryan.

    July 20, 2011 04:07 pm at 4:07 pm |
  17. BethAnne

    Even these folks' hero, Ronald Reagan, raised taxes when necessary for the good of the country's economy. Yet they themselves cling to the no-tax revenue notion like flies to you-know-what on the sidewalk. Can't fix stupid I guess.

    July 20, 2011 04:08 pm at 4:08 pm |
  18. End GOPerate greed

    This guy looks and acts like the proverbial "deer in the headlights" – Ryan never knew what hit him. Another pitiful Forest Gump from the tea-baggers.

    July 20, 2011 04:08 pm at 4:08 pm |
  19. A real American

    Shut up, voucher boy.

    July 20, 2011 04:08 pm at 4:08 pm |
  20. dumb da dumb dumb dumb

    ryan sure knows about numbers not adding up - this is the same clown that waived around his little cover page for three different plans for over a year and his "courageous" plan was dead on arrival. his career is over. you and he need to realize that. maybe his uncle can give him a real job.

    July 20, 2011 04:09 pm at 4:09 pm |
  21. bb

    Why does Paul Ryan hate seniors?

    July 20, 2011 04:09 pm at 4:09 pm |
  22. Rudy NYC

    Didn't I tell you that Republicans would try to roll out the Ryan Plan again? The Ryan Plan is tame compared to "Cut, Cap and Balance". This is how Republicans offer comprise: death by fire, death by drowning, or death by freezing. Take your pick. Survival is not an option because it is off the table.

    July 20, 2011 04:10 pm at 4:10 pm |
  23. Democrat Class Warfare & Race Baiting - Destroying the economy, destroying the country

    We need to find some way to clone this guy! He's one of the few in Dc with his head screwed on straight, has knowledge and the guts to put a plan forward. NOBODY else has done it to date, including our feckless leader from behind the teleprompter Obama.

    If Chris Christie would run with Paul Ryan as VP, this country would have a bright future. We'll barely survive another year with the current dolt. If this country is brain dead and reelects him, we're toast. We will NOT be able to survive another 4 years of this this Obamination.

    July 20, 2011 04:11 pm at 4:11 pm |
  24. Rickster

    "From the recession’s low point in January 2009 until April 2010, when Obamacare went into effect, the private sector created about 67,600 jobs a month. After the president signed PPACA into law, that number slowed to a meager 6,400 jobs a month — a more than 90 percent decrease or less than one-tenth the previous rate."
    -------------------
    And this is President Failure's "signature piece of legislation". It's a piece of something alright but "legislation" isn't the correct word. Heckuva job, Barry. Now, the next time you step to the podium, hold your fist up, then point your index finger straight up and extend your thumb out horizontally and place the back of your hand against your forehead.

    July 20, 2011 04:11 pm at 4:11 pm |
  25. DENNA

    With the debt ceiling negotiations stuck in a circular loop, Wisconsin Republican Rep. Paul Ryan remains steadfastly opposed to the so-called 'Gang of Six' budget plan-despite the fact that it partly resembles his own budget proposal.
    ___________________________________________________________________________________________________
    Hmmm. Romney is against Obamacare even though it was modeled on Romneycare. Are these people crazy?Paul, the plan resembles your own budget proposal. What is what is the problem?

    July 20, 2011 04:11 pm at 4:11 pm |
1 2