The White House rejected Rep. Paul Ryan’s (R-WI) “Path to Prosperity” budget blueprint for fiscal 2012 Tuesday, arguing that it unfairly guarantees the prosperity of wealthy millionaires while overburdening seniors and the poor.
While President Obama is committed to dramatically reducing the country’s long-term deficit, White House spokesman Jay Carney said, Ryan’s plan is exactly the wrong approach.
“The President believes that dramatically reducing America’s long-term deficit is essential to growing our economy and winning the future,” Carney said in a statement. “Any plan to reduce our deficit must reflect the American values of fairness and shared sacrifice. Congressman Ryan’s plan fails this test.”
Ryan’s plan cuts taxes for millionaires and special interests, Carney said, while placing a greater burden on seniors who depend on Medicare or live in nursing homes, families struggling with a child who has serious disabilities, workers who have lost their health care coverage, and students and their families who rely on Pell grants.
“The President believes there is a more balanced way to put America on a path to prosperity,” he said.
Republicans say the plan would achieve most of its cuts from repealing health care reform, President Obama’s signature legislative accomplishment. It would also drastically change Medicare. Instead of the government reimbursing doctors and hospitals for medical services, seniors would be forced to purchase a private health care plan, and the government would then pay the private insurer in the form of a capped subsidy. Republicans argue that it would bring down the cost of health insurance because of increased competition, but Democrats argue that the limited subsidies would undoubtedly result in cuts to elderly care.
Ryan’s plan also would lower the highest individual and corporate tax rates from 35 percent to 25 percent and attempts to make up for that lost revenue by closing tax loopholes, eliminating special carve-outs and tax credits.