Tea Party Should Support the Ryan Budget

Since the new federal budget was introduced this week by the young conservative chairman of the House of Representatives Budget Committee, Congressman Paul D. Ryan, Republican from Wisconsin, there has been a lot of discussion in conservative circles  --  especially amongst Tea Party supporters  --  on whether or not the Ryan budget is conservative enough and balances the budget fast enough.

The fact that the Ryan budget would take between 25 and 30 years to balance the gargantuan federal budget gave this author  --  who, when a congressional chief of staff, saw this rising Republican star when he was a very young snot-nosed legislative aide to Congressman (now governor) Sam Brownback, R-KS, and who was highly impressed with Paul Ryan from the beginning   --  some pause.

Indeed, the budget authored by the conservative 180-member strong House Republican Study Committee (RSC), will balance the budget in 10 years or less.  However, Congressman Ryan defends his budget proposal by saying that because of the scoring methods done by the supposedly non-partisan Congressional Budget Committee (CBO)  --  which at one time in the early 1990’s had one conservative staffer amongst some 40 or so staffers  --  his budget will not balance as fast as it actually will if dynamic scoring methods were used by the CBO.

Dynamic scoring reflected the beliefs of President John F. Kennedy and President Ronald Wilson Reagan who believed that lower taxes on individuals and  businesses would produce dynamic economic growth rates and much higher revenue as a result to the federal government’s coffers.  Both the Kennedy and Reagan tax cuts produced lengthy periods of dynamic economic growth.  Obviously, the Democrats in the 112th Congress  --  and the Congressional Budget Office  --   no longer believe in their former president’s philosophy.  The Kennedy Democrats are long dead.

Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan, when asked by reporters why it took so long for his budget proposal to balance the federal budget, blamed the bureaucrats at the Congressional Budget Office for not taking into account when they crunch the numbers the great growth from supply-side economics as expressed in Ryan’s tax policies.  The Ryan budget gets rid of 4 individual tax rates and establishes two rates:  25% and 10%; keeps the 15% rate on capital gains and dividends; and decreases the current jobs-killing corporate tax rate down to 25% which is the international average.

Congressman Ryan stated that if Congress passes his budget, that because of the greatly accelerated economic growth which is anticipated, there is a good chance the federal budget will be balanced within a decade.

As “The Wall Street Journal” pointed out in its editorial yesterday, the Ryan budget will reduce spending by some $5 trillion over the next 10 years.  On the other hand, Barack Obama’s budget would increase spending by $1.5 trillion above the current budget baseline and increase taxes by a whopping $1.9 trillion.

As the newspaper points out, only reform such as proposed in the Ryan budget “will prevent Medicare from destroying itself.”  Additionally, the Ryan budget  --  supported by Speaker John Boehner, R-OH  --  includes block-granting Medicaid, food stamps and many other welfare programs to the states.

The Tea Party should insist that the Republican leadership in the House of Representatives allow a vote on the more conservative Republican Study Committee budget.  Of course, the Democrat-controlled Senate  --  which has not passed a budget in 3 years as mandated by federal law and the Constitution  --  will not allow a vote on the RSC budget, and probably will not even allow a vote on the Ryan budget.

In the end, if the RSC budget fails to receive enough votes for passage in the House of Representatives, the Ryan budget  -- which, with dynamic scoring, could very well balance the budget in nearly 10 years  --  must be supported by the Tea Party.