Thursday, February 4, 2010

Making the GOP own the Ryan plan

House GOP leader John Boehner realizes the Paul Ryan Road Map to Ruin is toxic politically and is trying to distance the GOP from it -- but the Dems won't let him. Good for them.

From Talking Points Memo:

You thought Republicans were going to be able to wiggle away from their historic support for privatizing Medicare and Social Security? Think again.

Leading Democrats aren't letting the GOP put much distance between themselves and a new, long-term budget proposal written by their top budget guy, Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI).

"That's their budget plan," Rep. Chris Van Hollen (D-MD)--chair of the House Democrats' reelection committee--told me in a brief interview. "He's the ranking Republican member on the Budget Committee. That is their so-called roadmap. And it's a roadmap right into the economic ditch that we got ourselves to begin with.... Put it this way. For seniors on Medicare, it's a dead end."

Van Hollen says Republicans should own up to their own ideas, and debate them on the merits, or else stop complaining when Democrats accuse them of being the Party of No.

"These guys got very sensitive about the fact that they had no ideas to put on the table," Van Hollen said. "Well, it turns out they did have some ideas to put on the table. You gotta give Congressman Ryan credit for putting the proposal on the table. Now they should have to live with the consequences of that proposal."

Will it work? Only if the Dems seize the opportunity to act vs. expecting the public to suddenly be swayed or for the GOP to be shamed into coming to the table (check out Boehner's tan -- you think he can feel shame?). If nothing else, the House GOP running away from the plan they were just praising shows these guys can be beat at framing the issues. If the Dems seize advantage.

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