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Tag Archives: deficit

Lanhee Chen: Paul Ryan One of the Conservative Movement’s Most Articulate and Thoughtful Leaders


Paul Ryan has announced that he won’t be running for reelection again this fall.

He was first elected to Congress in 1998 and during his 20 years there, has served the citizens of the First District of Wisconsin well. Even as he rose to become one of the most powerful elected leaders in the country Paul remained a humble man who is, above all, a devoted husband and father.

History will remember Paul Ryan for being one of the conservative movement’s most articulate and thoughtful leaders.  He fought for important ideas like a balanced budget, reform of our tax code and entitlement reform.

But I will remember Paul Ryan as so much more.  I had the privilege and honor to work with him when he was the GOP’s nominee for Vice President in 2012.  There is almost no one in public life whom I respect and admire more.

He will be missed.

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Lanhee Chen: A Spending Problem

single-payer

President Trump earned significant praise for his first State of the Union Address—and for good reason. It presented an affirmative vision for what unified Republican governance can accomplish. It also laid out policy priorities to keep the homeland secure and strengthen our economy. One thing that was missing, however, was any mention of our growing deficits and national debt. Washington is spending more money than it has and more than it should—and lawmakers from both parties seem perfectly content to continue on the path we’re on. This spending requires us to borrow money from foreign adversaries, hurts our economy’s ability to grow and leaves our kids and grandkids with the bill.

 

A change in course is desperately needed. Indeed, reining in spending is never politically easy. That’s why it will take a leader willing to buck trends and attack the special interests—and perhaps even some in his own party—to get the job done.

 

Here’s to hoping that Donald Trump can be that leader.

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The Tax Bill Needs Follow-On Spending Cuts

Compromise

Although a tax cut may have been a nice Christmas gift, it needs some follow-on spending cuts to work.  At best, Republicans have eaten their dessert first, waiting to eat their spending cut vegetables later; at worst, they will have increased the federal deficit by another trillion dollars or more.

 

By most estimates, even stimulating economic growth will not fully pay for the tax cut.  Republicans will now have to undertake the politically courageous step of cutting federal spending.

 

It will be difficult to make spending cuts without touching Medicare or Social Security, which President Trump has said are off limits. Meanwhile there is pressure to undo the sequester, automatic cuts on spending no one liked, but which have at least kept spending growth down.

 

Ideally, Republicans would have disciplined themselves to do tax and spending cuts at the same time. Tax cuts may come and go, but the federal debt remains forever, it seems. And—without spending cuts—it grows.

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