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Posted at 06:00 AM ET, 03/16/2012

Paul Ryan’s dramatic budget preview

Heavy on theatrics but light on specifics, House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) has released a short video previewing the budget proposal he plans to unveil next week.

With ominous music playing, Ryan literally paces the dimly lit halls of Congress, stares into the camera and talks about the beginnings of the 2008 economic crisis. Then he asks:

“What if your president, your senator and your congressman knew it was coming? What if they knew when it was going to happen, why it was going to happen, and more importantly, what if they knew what they needed to do to stop it from happening and they had the time to stop it, but they chose to do nothing about it, because it wasn’t good politics? What would you think of that person? It would be immoral. This coming debt crisis is the most predictable crisis we’ve ever had in this country. And look what’s happening. This is why we’re acting. This is why we’re leading. This is why we're proposing and passing from the House a budget to fix this problem. So we can save this country, for ourselves and for our children’s future.”

As the video ends, Ryan turns into a room and takes a seat in front of another camera, where presumably his budget proposal continues next week in another video installment.

Ryan’s plan, backed by the most conservative members of the House GOP conference, will reportedly slash 2013 agency budgets below levels set during last year’s debt-limit negotiations, a move set to infuriate congressional Democrats and some Republicans who already fault Ryan for reneging on a formal bipartisan, bicameral agreement passed into law.

House Appropriations Committee Chairman Harold Rogers (R-Ky.) already said last week that he is “uncomfortable” lowering the budget caps by as much as $19 billion below the budget deal.

Thursday night, the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee blasted Ryan for reportedly planning once again to propose changes to Medicare and for using “a taxpayer funded self-promotional video” to criticize Democrats for the nation’s fiscal woes.

“Ryan and House Republicans are responsible for getting our country into this debt crisis and now want seniors to be the first to sacrifice to get us out,” DCCC spokesman Jesse Ferguson said in a statement Thursday night.

Though Ryan won’t formally unveil the budget plan until Tuesday, don’t be surprised to learn more about it over the weekend.

Follow Ed O’Keefe on Twitter: @edatpost

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By  |  06:00 AM ET, 03/16/2012

 
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