U.S. Rep. Paul Ryan says President Barack Obama was bluffing when he told Republicans he would not sign a debt bill without significant tax increases.
But he did just that, Ryan writes in The Wall Street Journal,
and the GOP has called his bluff.
Calling it a win for the GOP, Ryan wrote that "Republicans in Congress ignored this threat and passed a bill that cuts more than a dollar in spending for every dollar it increases the debt limit, without raising taxes," said Ryan, who is the chairman of the House Budget Committee.
Ryan's scathing editorial accuses Obama of failing to lead his party, and of setting no real concrete ideas to diminish the nation's spiraling debt.
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"Ever since they abused the budget process to jam their health-care takeover through Congress last year, the Democrats have simply done away with serious budgeting altogether," writes Ryan. "The simplest explanation—and the president's real bluff—is that they don't want to commit publicly to the kind of tax increases and health-care rationing that would be required to sustain their archaic vision of government."
In the editorial, Ryan attacks the Senate for failing to produce a budget for two years, creating a "leadership deficit" that threw the budgeting process into chaos, outlines why Obama's healthcare plan is more costly than other options, and says the Senate's Gang of Six, though well-intentioned "lacked specific reforms to curb the health-care spending. Actually, it took steps in the wrong direction by explicitly requiring policy makers to "maintain the basic structure" of government health-care programs. That structure is unsustainable."
Saying the Democrats only want to continue with runaway spending, Ryan says the President and party leaders "have refused to submit specific, credible budget plans that tackle health-care costs while restoring economic growth. Unwilling to reconsider their failed bureaucratic approaches to health and retirement security, the Democrats can only propose tax increases, and lots of them."
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