Certainly, President Obama’s personal attack (more on that in a moment) helped. But the House just passed the budget authored by Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) There were only four no votes by GOP members. Folks, that’s not how it usually works. (Previous Ryan budgets when the GOP was in the minority drew 38 and 40 no votes by party members.) Most often it is considered a “tough” vote for the majority party, and there are many defections. Not today.
It seems that what unites the Republican Party, from Tea Partyers to Main Streeters to libertarians to GOP leadership, is Paul Ryan. Maybe it’s his personality, but certainly his vision and his intellectual seriousness count. Sure, the Republican Study Committee members wanted a vote on their own budget. But make no mistake, when it comes to passing a budget and standing with their budget leader and wonk in chief, they are there.
This is an extraordinary personal accomplishment for Ryan, who began the Roadmap for America years ago. It’s now a statement of policy and ideology by the GOP, one that commits it to reforming the welfare state while maintaining a vibrant private sector.
Who knows if the Senate Democrats will even introduce a budget. (Pathetic, if they don’t.) But for now the question on the table is how much and where to cut. Ryan’s vision was behind it, and the grass-roots conservative base made it possible in the 2010 midterms.
Over to you, Mr. President. Let’s see the numbers from the new-and-improved Wednesday budget, and, by the way, do they use CBO estimates for purposes of budgeting?
A word about the president’s decorum at his budget speech on Wednesday. Not unlike his treatment of the Supreme Court justices in the State of the Union speech in 2010, Obama had his opponents in front of him without their having the ability to respond. This is not only unfair, it is simply rude. You don't invite people over, turn on the camera and then excoriate them to their face. Well, not unless you are this president.