In “Where’s Your Budget, Mr. President,” (Wall Street Journal, 8/3/11) House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan wrote that President Obama had failed to present any plan to deal with the long-term debt and deficit. This is only one of the untruths in his article.
However, in April, the President laid down a framework for $4 trillion in deficit reduction, describing responsible reforms to Medicare and Medicaid and closing tax loopholes.
The President initiated and led meetings, examples being:
- the Biden Group
- multiple times with all 8 Congressional leaders
- two rounds of talks with Congressman Boehner – which Mr. Boehner walked out on.
Mr. Ryan claimed that the Republicans had gained everything in the final deal; there are a number of things they have been attempting to achieve – which they have not:
- They were not able to voucherize Medicare, or to make Medicaid into a disastrous block grant program
- They were not able to cause damage to the Social Security program
- They were not able to force Congress to spend another several weeks or months attendingonly to the debt crisis – in a mere six more months.
- They were not able to force ALL the cuts to come from non-security programs
Mr. Ryan again told the untruths about the effects of the Affordable Care Act, and contradicting the assessments of the Congressional Budget Office (CBO), in truth:
- The Affordable Care Act (ACA) was fully paid for
- The ACA is scored to reduce the deficit by $200 billion over the next 10 years, and more than $1 trillion in the following 10 years.
- The ACA will provide health care coverage for 34 million Americans and will extend the life of the Medicare trust fund.
- The ACA WILL NOT cause the $6,400 annual increase in health costs for seniors – which would have been the result of the Ryan plan.
The biggest, and worst, deception is promoting the idea that the budget can be balanced and deficits reduced without any tax increases.
NETWORK believes that there is a direct correlation between the dreadful deficits faced by our nation – and the huge chasm called the “wealth gap.” Continued payments to the wealthiest members of our communities through tax incentives, compensated for by higher taxes paid by low-income households, continue to widen this gap. In justice, those who are most able to support this nation must be held accountable to do so. To learn more about the wealth gap, visit “Mind-the-Gap” at: www.networklobby.org/campaign/mind-the-gap .