Ryan vague on which loopholes to cut
September 9th, 2012
03:05 PM ET
10 years ago

Ryan vague on which loopholes to cut

(CNN) - Republican vice-presidential nominee Paul Ryan on Sunday attempted to clarify the plan that he and Mitt Romney have put forth to reduce the deficit, saying they aim to raise revenue not by increasing tax rates, but by ending certain loopholes and deductions for the wealthy.

The House Budget Committee chairman, however, did not elaborate on which loopholes he would plug, saying those decisions should be made in a public debate.

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On CBS's "Face the Nation," Ryan said their plan would change "the way we raise revenue by plugging loopholes and tax shelters that are uniquely enjoyed by higher-income earners." Meanwhile, he said, middle-income earners would receive tax breaks.

Pressed further on which loopholes he would amend, Ryan did not name any specifics.

"It's not what loopholes are out there, but who gets them," he said. "And we're saying by not having higher-income earners utilize these tax shelters, we can lower tax rates on everybody, because they pay more of their income to taxation."

Romney's tax plan calls for 20% cuts to current Bush-era income tax rates. He would also eliminate the Alternative Minimum Tax. Democrats, however, point to a Tax Policy Center report released in August that determined Romney's plan would provide large tax cuts to the wealthiest Americans while increasing the tax burden on the lower and middle classes.

Ryan insisted President Barack Obama's tax proposal, a measure that would raise taxes on households making at least $250,000 per year, would place burdens on certain small-business owners and have a crippling effect on the economy.

He later added: "We can lower tax rates by plugging loopholes and still maintain special preferences for middle-class taxpayers, not for higher-income taxpayers though."

Ryan said he and Romney would decide on the loopholes by having “a debate out in front” and “work with Congress, work with the public, to find out what are the priorities.”

Romney also talked about the tax plan in an interview that aired Sunday, saying Democrats were putting out myths by saying the Romney-Ryan ticket wants to cut taxes for the rich. He asserted that a Romney administration would not "lower taxes on high income people."

"We're not going to have high income people pay less of the tax burden than they pay today. That's not what's going to happen," Romney said on NBC's "Meet the Press." "I do want to bring taxes down for middle income people. In particular I want middle income Americans not to have to pay taxes on interest and dividends and capital gains."

On Sunday, Obama seemingly took aim at Ryan over his refusal Sunday morning to further outline the tax changes supported by the GOP ticket.

Obama defended his plans, which he said would bring down the deficit and simplify the tax code. He described the plans proposed by the other side of the aisle as "bad math," not "bold leadership."

- CNN White House Producer Gabriella Schwarz contributed to this report.

Filed under: 2012 • Mitt Romney • Paul Ryan • Taxes
soundoff (105 Responses)
  1. They ought to change from the elephant to the hippo...

    Oh just trust me and vote me in- the Republicans say. I say NFW!

    September 9, 2012 03:08 pm at 3:08 pm |
  2. smack_soup

    Just saw this posted on Twitter, and I have to say that I'm not surprised. They don't want to give any specifics on ANYTHING until after the election. These guys are both jokes.

    September 9, 2012 03:12 pm at 3:12 pm |
  3. GI Joe

    Whatever Norquist tells them to cut.

    September 9, 2012 03:19 pm at 3:19 pm |
  4. Mack J.

    Someone needs to slap that ever-present smirk off Ryan's face!!

    September 9, 2012 03:21 pm at 3:21 pm |
  5. kathy/Minnesota

    Just by his nature, LYIN RYAN is not going to give up any crediable info. It's not a part of who he is.Even before getting on the GOP ticket, he "always" avoided specifics, that's who he is,that's what he does.........bobbin and weavin.

    September 9, 2012 03:26 pm at 3:26 pm |
  6. Vincent


    Both sides need to show the details, and the numbers, so all voters can see what it is thats being proposed!

    September 9, 2012 03:30 pm at 3:30 pm |
  7. Mike

    So once again, the Romney/Ryan promise is "Elect us and then we'll reveal our plan." For somebody my age, that sounds like "give me a blank check" or "what's your debit card PIN?" What has Romney done to deserve that level of trust? One year of tax returns? Offshore bank accounts? Hollowing out companies for personal gain and then dumping the ex-employees on the Federal Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation? Unelectable in the state he was Governor and the state his father was Governor?

    September 9, 2012 03:33 pm at 3:33 pm |
  8. BCInNV

    Of course he is 'cus this guy knows nothing!

    September 9, 2012 03:37 pm at 3:37 pm |
  9. ColoradoJoe

    If I read this correctly, Romney is highly dependent on many corporations come back to the US. Or even foriegn compnaies opening up here. This would increase the government revenue because many more are paying the lower corp taxes. But if corporations keep jobs over seas (mainly because labor costs are cheaper) then there would be little new revenue thus all hell breaks loose. Wow that's a big bet

    September 9, 2012 03:38 pm at 3:38 pm |
  10. dreucalypt

    Under pressure the Republicans become weasels.

    September 9, 2012 03:43 pm at 3:43 pm |
  11. Wise1Speak


    . . . .because the way they are going to raise revenue is to get rid of the 'mortgage tax returns' that millions of hard-press middle-class wage earners depend on to help pay-off their underwater mortgages. If Romney & Ryan acknowledged this, they would lose in all 50 states. So they hide that fact for now.

    September 9, 2012 03:46 pm at 3:46 pm |
  12. khaleeshi

    Lyin Ryan at it again. This guy has been caught in so many lies, why would anyone believe at this that comes out of his mouth.

    September 9, 2012 03:51 pm at 3:51 pm |
  13. 2020

    Ryan is hawk, double down on Romney tax cut for the rich, for oil industry.

    Ryan lied about his position on women. He legislated women putting a chain on their uterus.

    Ryan overpowering Beohner, Kanter. He crown himself as economist which is never qualified.

    Ryan made his budget like playing video games. He has no idea of how to factor in human cost.

    Without consideration of human cost, USA is an empty shelf. Ryan and Romney had no idea for whom they run the presidential office – THE PEOPLE.


    September 9, 2012 03:57 pm at 3:57 pm |
  14. Randy, San Francisco

    Romney/Ryan are silent about because their plan will shift the tax burden to the middle class. The middle class, poor, and seniors will suffer because of bad math and supply side economics.

    September 9, 2012 03:57 pm at 3:57 pm |
  15. 1608

    cnn please let us in. r+r just give a little info that would be a good start

    September 9, 2012 04:05 pm at 4:05 pm |
  16. Conservative Liberal

    Anyone who would vote for these two jackwagons Robmey and Lyin' Ryan should be shot dead. Or at the very least given treatment at a local mental-health facility. I just shake my head at the level of incompetence in the republican party. That includes Govs, Senetors, Congresspeople and voters. EVERYBODY.

    September 9, 2012 04:05 pm at 4:05 pm |
  17. Rennes11

    The only thing Ryan's plan has is to benefit the rich and hurt the poor, middle class, women and all those trying to make a better life here in America.

    If Ryan' believe in his budget plan, he would have stayed as Chairman of the Budget committee instead of becoming the running mate of Romney. He can't do as much as the VP as he could as the Chairman. I guess he didn't believe in his plan either.

    September 9, 2012 04:06 pm at 4:06 pm |
  18. Conservative Liberal

    Well maybe shot dead is too harsh and probably considered a threat, so scratch that. I'll just stick to mental health treatment.

    September 9, 2012 04:07 pm at 4:07 pm |
  19. Kiki

    This is confirmation of what President Clinton said about the republicans not "wanting to show their plans until after the election". Once in office, Americans will be absolutely helpless and completely at their mercy.

    September 9, 2012 04:13 pm at 4:13 pm |
  20. alicia

    These guys are unbelievable .. they are running for public office but won't tell us anything they plan on doing when they get into office. Anyone who votes for these two are strictly doing it out of hate or social issues.

    September 9, 2012 04:14 pm at 4:14 pm |
  21. Yonni

    Ryan is a giant intellectual for the Republican Party compared to other intellectual of RP Rush Limbaugh and Sean Hannity. This guy doesn't have the gravity, thinking capacity (lies all the time), and the experience required to be the VP of the US. His nomination is an insult to the people of this country and the world. How a major national party make two mistakes (one is Palin) in the span of four years is mind boggling.

    September 9, 2012 04:14 pm at 4:14 pm |
  22. Catmandew

    Of course OBAMA claims the other side uses bad math but Obamas math has not helped us either! Obama take the wealth away and give to people that didnt work for it BAD MATH Obama!

    September 9, 2012 04:20 pm at 4:20 pm |
  23. UrAverageJoe

    Come on – if you're not going to raise taxes, and you're going to cut taxes, you have to plug an awful lot of loopholes to balance the budget and pay down the debt. Our tax rates are the level they were in the 1950s, before Medicare, before AFDC, before the prescription drug benefit, before the defense budget explosion of the 80s. If you're not going to increase revenue, at least be honest enough to say ALL THOSE PROGRAMS HAVE TO GO!

    September 9, 2012 04:25 pm at 4:25 pm |
  24. REG in AZ

    Ryan constantly, clearly identifies his propensity for deception and dishonesty, in most everything he says and doesn't say. If because of emotional loyalties / biases people accept him, accept his candicy and support him, then it is possible that we may again, like when with Bush-Cheney, have a government pursuing their own private agenda to benefit the few, while depending on subterfuge and deception to con the people and manipulate public opinion.

    September 9, 2012 04:28 pm at 4:28 pm |
  25. Jules

    Of course they won't say which loopholes because they know if they cut mortgage deductions and charitable deductions, the middle class will end up with a higher tax bill. They will never tell you what they are going to cut because it will hurt the poor and the middle class. "We will have a debate" says Ryan – after we're elected. We don't want to tell you now because we don't want you to know we will screw you over before we're elected. I do not know how one senior citizen can vote for Romney/Ryan. the donut hole on perscriptions closes at $600 a year until it is gone – Romney said he will repeal Obamacare and replace it, but he will not tell you with what – except for the vouchers. Ah yes, the vouchers – they will give seniors a voucher to go into the insurance market to buy your medicare. Not enough to get the plan you need? Too dang bad for you. What happens when the cost of the insurance goes up? Do vouchers keep up? My bet is not likely. What happens to those whose insurance policies don't cover the needs. Well, there is Medicaid, which Romney/Ryan will turn over to the states and cut 10's of billions out of. This GOP is the sorriest excuse for healthcare coverage I have ever heard of. To all seniors, I ask this of you, talk to your Medicare people and find out exactly what Obamacare will do for you. It is so much better for seniors now and for seniors in the future. And speaking as a senior, I think you would be just dumber than dumb to vote Republican.

    September 9, 2012 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
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