New Ryan budget would slash $5.1 trillion in spending, repeal Obamacare

Alexis Levinson Political Reporter
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Rep. Paul Ryan on Tuesday announced a new budget plan that would cut $5.1 trillion and balance the budget over the next decade, in part by repealing Obamacare.

The budget proposal, dubbed The Path to Prosperity, is Ryan’s last budget as the outgoing chairman of the House Budget Committee.

“This is a plan to balance the budget and create jobs, and it builds off a simple fact: We can’t keep spending money we don’t have,” Ryan said in a statement.

“This budget provides relief for families. Too many Americans struggle to make ends meet, while Washington continues to live beyond its means,” he added. “It’s irresponsible to take more from hardworking families to spend more in Washington. Today’s proposal — The Path to Prosperity — shows that it’s not too late to tackle our country’s most pressing challenges.”

The proposed repeal of Obamacare accounts for 40 percent of the $5.1 trillion in spending cuts, according to the Wall Street Journal‘s calculations.

Entitlement reform would also be a major component.

The food stamp program would be adjusted so that each state was budgeted a certain amount of money “tailored for each state’s low-income population.” That restructuring would not begin until 2019.

It “recommends a fundamental reform” of Medicaid, potentially along those same guidelines, where each state is allotted a certain amount of funds based on its low-income population and can use that money to tailor the program to its specific needs.

Ryan factored in a projection by the CBO that “the budget would grow the economy” and assumed that the improved economy would help reduce the deficit.

The budget proposal “calls for a tax code that is simpler, fairer, and more competitive,” but it does not put forward anything more specific on that subject.

Ryan would potentially have a big role in crafting a specific plan for tax reform — he is in the running to become the next chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee, which would be responsible for such an effort.

The budget plan adheres to the broad outline set forward in the Bipartisan Budget Act that Ryan crafted last year with his counterpart on the Senate Budget Committee, Democratic Sen. Patty Murray.

“The Bipartisan Budget Act was a good first step,” Ryan said. “But we can and must do more. As the House majority, we have a responsibility to lay out a long-term vision for the country, and this budget shows how we will solve our nation’s biggest challenges.”

“By cutting wasteful spending, strengthening key priorities, and laying the foundation for a stronger economy, we have shown the American people there’s a better way forward,” he said.

The document is largely political, as it has little chance of getting through the Democrat-controlled Senate or passed by a President Obama.

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid ridiculed it Tuesday morning as creating a “Kochtopia,” and pandering to the billionaire Koch Brothers and big donors to Republican candidates and causes, whom Reid is portraying as boogeymen heading into the 2014 elections. The Senate did not offer a budget proposal this year.

Read Ryan’s full budget proposal here.

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