It's a completely unfair fight, of course, but fun to watch nonetheless. After our pal Debbie dishonestly blathers on about "tornados passing through nursing homes," or whatever for the umpteenth time, Ryan responds with a battery of facts:
Correcting lazy and irresponsible lies from Democrats is a frustratingly vicious cycle. It's like a never-ending game of demagoguery whack-a-mole. Once again, let's review the points Ryan made in response to attacks from Wasserman Schultz and Rep. Chris Van Hollen (D-MD):
(1) The Ryan plan and President Obama's budget both cap Medicare's growth rate at GDP plus 0.5 percent. Obama's proposal enforces this cap through an IPAB rationing panel of 15 unelected and totally unaccountable bureaucrats. Ryan's does so through increased choice and competition for future seniors. Remember, the current Medicare system is essentially a cost blind enterprise. Seniors obtain care, and someone else pays the bill, which the patient never even sees. This arrangement provides no incentives for people to make smarter choices about their own care because they're totally divorced from the fee-for-service transactions. This drives up costs, for obvious reasons.
(2) Under the bipartisan Ryan-Wyden plan -- in which future seniors will be able to choose among multiple plans, including the traditional Medicare model -- wealthier and healthier seniors will receive lower subsidies. Less fortunate and sicker seniors will receive much more generous premium support. I thought Democrats were all about "fairness."
(3) For the millionth time, the Ryan budget does not affect anyone over the age of 55. The president's Obamacare-created rationing board imposes price controls on current seniors. That law also raided $500 Billion from current Medicare to pay for a brand new, unwanted, and possibly unconstitutional entitlement program.
(4) Ryan's reforms save Medicare from insolvency, which is scheduled for 2024 at the moment. Obama's plan does nothing to solve this problem, as the Treasury Secretary admitted last month. The president's pathetic budget (which never balances) was unanimously defeated in the House of Representatives last night, 414-0 -- just as his FY 2012 version garnered zero votes in the Democrat-controlled Senate last year.
The full House will consider Ryan's budget later this afternoon. Stay tuned for news and analysis of that vote...
UPDATE - The never-balancing, tax-hiking House Progressive Caucus budget has been defeated, 76-346. This fiscal blueprint therefore won 76 more votes in the chamber than the president's did. How embarrassing. I'll say this: Kudos to the House Progressives for at least introducing and attempting to pass a budget, which is far more than can be said of their Senate comrades. But it's a sad commentary on Harry Reid and Chuck Schumer's leadership that I'm reduced to congratulating other Democrats for simply following the law.
UPDATE II - The conservative Republican Study Group's budget alternative (which is more aggressive than Ryan's plan) has been defeated 135-286. Republicans split almost evenly on the measure. Democrats uniformly voted no.
UPDATE III - The House has defeated the Democrats' alternative budget, 163-262. Twenty-three Democrats crossed over and joined Republicans to shoot down this proposal.