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. Kiki

    To elect Romney/Ryan by blind faith not knowing what their plans are is like buying a used car without checking under the hood.

    September 9, 2012 04:32 pm at 4:32 pm |
  2. SafeJourney

    Ol' Lyin Ryan and Mitt the twit, Ryans budget, which Mitt said he supports, gives tax cuts to the rich like Mitt.
    NO way in hell will I vote for those rubes

    Obama/Biden 2012

    September 9, 2012 04:35 pm at 4:35 pm |
  3. jane

    they believe in making up stuff....watch out for Lyin Ryan

    September 9, 2012 04:39 pm at 4:39 pm |
  4. Deb in MT

    "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."

    This whole fracking election campaign should be considered a public debate, so tell us which loopholes you plan to close!
    It's pretty clear that these 2 cowards–Romney & Ryan–are afraid to be honest with us: if we knew the truth, R & R would be lucky to carry Utah.

    September 9, 2012 04:45 pm at 4:45 pm |
  5. g

    they will close the ones they don,t use

    September 9, 2012 04:50 pm at 4:50 pm |
  6. MIkeinTexas

    They know what loopholes they want to cut but they won't tell the American people because the middle class will be poked in the eye once more for the sake of the wealthiest because as the Republicans say.....they are the "job creators".

    September 9, 2012 04:53 pm at 4:53 pm |
  7. naksuthin

    Romney and Ryan are going to have to be a lot more specific about their plans for tax cuts, elimination of deductions and Medicare vouchers if they want people to vote for them.
    As an independent, I'd rather go with what I know rather than what I don't know.
    And I don't know much about what Romney and Ryan plan to do

    September 9, 2012 04:56 pm at 4:56 pm |
  8. Milton K. Wiah

    Let Mitt close his tax shelters in those foreign countries before he closes those in America

    September 9, 2012 05:00 pm at 5:00 pm |
  9. Anonymous

    why wont the Republicans have this dialogue with the American people now during the election? I am insulted that Mr. Ryan does not think the American people are part of the conversation and that he intends to dialogue only with Congress after the election. Also, has anyone asked them how they define "high income" or do we have to wait until after the election to find that out too? This guy is supposed to be the policy and numbers wonk of the ticket and he isnt making any sense at all.

    September 9, 2012 05:06 pm at 5:06 pm |
  10. RalphB

    If an election campaign is not a public debate, then what is? Ryan is a lying loser.

    September 9, 2012 05:10 pm at 5:10 pm |
  11. Tom Joad

    I don't want to live in a country where the Grand Oil Party has free reign. The fox would be in charge of the chicken coup and we be back to the Bushes.

    September 9, 2012 05:24 pm at 5:24 pm |
  12. Vote for Seamus, elect Kolob's next dog catcher

    Rich get more govt handouts and tax breaks, easier access to courts for quicker bankruptcy liquidation.

    Anybody else, back of the line. Should have paid a lobbyist to hold your place at the front of the line. Too bad, move along, don't cause problems, you are being watched. Lyan Ryan at their service, beep-beep.

    September 9, 2012 05:27 pm at 5:27 pm |
  13. Jane

    Any they don't close will be widen for those that get them elected. Actually they aren't sure of anything only that they aren't willing to work with a democrat who might get credit for trying to make life better for those of us who actually do the darn work!!!!

    September 9, 2012 05:27 pm at 5:27 pm |
  14. mulwillie

    "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."

    How does this statement, of Mr Ryan's, work with his proposal to drop the capital gains tax rate from 15% to 0. Last check showed that Mitt Romney would have paid less than 1% in tax. Could Mr Ryan tell me the hard truth how closing loopholes on the rich will get more revenue from people paying next to nothing under his plan?

    September 9, 2012 05:30 pm at 5:30 pm |
  15. Vote for Seamus, elect Kolob's next dog catcher

    The LYAN FOX guarding the hen house says:

    "they aim to raise revenue not by increasing tax rates, but by ending certain loopholes and deductions for the wealthy".

    September 9, 2012 05:32 pm at 5:32 pm |
  16. GI Joe

    Hey - They'll cut what Norquist tells them to cut. Will they tell us? Maybe so, maybe not. May just try to hide the cuts away like Shrub tried to hide the cost of the two wars.


    September 9, 2012 05:46 pm at 5:46 pm |
  17. GI Joe

    They'll tell us what we want to hear, and IF they get in, then they will flip and flop. Mark my word.

    September 9, 2012 05:47 pm at 5:47 pm |
  18. ithink122

    "In particular I want middle income Americans not to have to pay taxes on interest and dividends and capital gains."

    They don't. Aside from retirement accounts, which are tax free anyway, most of us "common" people either don't make most or all of our money from stocks or don't own any at all. By eliminating taxes on interest, dividends, capital gains and eliminating the alternative minimum tax, you will not reduce my tax bill one bit. I and those around me will not benefit at all. But do you know who will? YOU, Mr. Romney. Your tax burden will be reduced to almost zero.

    Who are these tax cuts being made for again?

    September 9, 2012 05:51 pm at 5:51 pm |
  19. glorydays

    How many 2 x 4's across the head will it take for you guys to figure it out that you're being had?

    September 9, 2012 06:00 pm at 6:00 pm |
  20. pkrbkr

    They don't KNOW......or don't want US to know! Obama/Biden 2012 Forward.......not Reverse/Republican

    September 9, 2012 06:06 pm at 6:06 pm |
  21. Len

    They have the same ideas as always:
    cut spending (eliminate programs for middle class and poor), cut education spending (because we donot want to compete with the rest of the world), eliminate the EPA (because we donot want to save our planet for future generations, we just want to drill baby drill), cut taxes for all corporations and the upper 2% (They create jobs, they haven't created any for 13 years but that okay), cut Planned Parenthood funding( middle class and the poor women do not need any healthcare for breast and gyn. exams), eliminate the Affordable Healthcare Law( we do not need insurance companies to cover us if we have preexisiting conditions , children and adults, womens healthcare for female exams, seniors do not need the drug loophole closed just let them spend more for thier medical needs) and there is more.
    Cut education (we donot need our children to go to cut college so cut Pell grants, let the other countries send their engineers here), INCREASE SPENDING for our MILITARY so all thoughs kids who donot have an education and cannot get a job, join the ARMY, NAVY, AIR FORCE, MARINES so we can start another WAR!!!!).

    Romney/Ryan will destroy this country, the middle class and the poor. This is a Class Warfare election.....and the GOP wants only one Class.....the Rich!!

    September 9, 2012 06:11 pm at 6:11 pm |
  22. don ramsey

    I had to almost beat myself up, but I read the "Pathway to Progress", Paulie's much ballyhooed budget proposal to cure our fiscal ailments. In reality it's nothing more than 99 pages of republican propoganda, with such as Krauthamer and the New York Times op. ed.s as source material. It reads like it was written as a sales presentation, but the graffs and charts are of questionable origion. In other words; he put more effort into it than Willard, but it's the same cow pie.

    September 9, 2012 06:11 pm at 6:11 pm |
  23. Larry L

    "Rob-me"Romney and "Lyin" Ryan haven't offered any specifics on anything! Romney won't trust voters with a look at his tax returns but he wants us the "trust him"... like the people who trusted him when Bain Capital threw them into the street without a pension check. I trust them both to kill Medicare and Social Security – that's it!

    September 9, 2012 06:14 pm at 6:14 pm |
  24. near_retirement

    There is no way that replacing medicare with vouchers for insurance coverage will save money. When insurance pays for medical costs a much greater portion goes to cover administrative costs than is seen for medicare expenses. The vouchers will provide less coverage for the same or more money.
    And as some nearing retirement, I don't want to spend the last years of my life figuring out what insurance product is the best use of my limited voucher funds, or sitting around with my children while they try and help me with the decisions. I have spent time with this every year when I do the cost benefit analysis for my family, I can't imagine doing it in my 80's.

    September 9, 2012 06:19 pm at 6:19 pm |
  25. PaulC

    Who do you think is more likely to have income from dividends, interest and capital gains?
    How many jobs will it create stashed in tax havens?
    Yes, you save $20.00 and I save $200,000.
    How can you reduce the deficit by reducing revenue? Voodoo economics at it's best.

    September 9, 2012 06:25 pm at 6:25 pm |
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