Paul Ryan

It's A Free Blog

Opinion: The GOP's Dumb Pivot to Foreign Affairs

Thursday, April 26, 2012

It's a bad sign for Republicans if their candidate is trying to focus the debate back on international security.

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It's A Free Blog

Opinion: How Paul Ryan Secretly Took Over the GOP

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

This week the GOP demonstrated again who their leader is: Representative Paul Ryan. What makes him the leader isn't how extreme he but that he's direct enough to stand by his plan, he's effective enough to insert his ideas into the public debate and most of all that Republicans are willing to follow him.

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Proposed Republican Budget Cuts Rile Democrats

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Republican Congressional leaders are staking out their positions on the federal budget, setting up what will most likely become another series of policy fights with President Barack Obama this election year.


It's A Free Blog

Opinion: Sen. Marco Rubio Won't Be the GOP Veep (Probably)

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Sources I’ve spoken to who are close with Rubio say that he isn’t interest in running as vice president - his roots are in Florida, his family is in Florida and he made a commitment to serve his full six-year term in office. 

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It's A Free Blog

Opinion: Obama's Budget Bait

Monday, February 13, 2012

With momentum in his favor, Obama needs to keep doing what he's doing: setting a trap for the GOP presidential hopefuls.

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The Brian Lehrer Show

Paging Mitt Romney: Here are the Holes in the Safety Net

Friday, February 03, 2012

Recap from It's a Free Country.

Welcome to Politics Bites, where every afternoon at It's A Free Country, we bring you the unmissable quotes from the morning's political conversations on WNYC. Today on the Brian Lehrer Show, Mitt Romney says if the safety net for the very poor needs repair, he'll fix it. Melissa Boteach, poverty expert and manager of the Half in Ten Campaign at the Center for American Progress Action Fund, offered suggestions on where to start.

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It's A Free Blog

Opinion: Where Are the Liberals? Here, Here, and Here

Friday, January 13, 2012

Earlier this week, New York Times columnist David Brooks asked, "Where are the liberals?" The short answer is that they are everywhere—pushing solutions, envisioning a stronger America and building a movement.

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It's A Free Blog

Pawlenty's Economic Plan Filled With Same Old Political Fictions

Wednesday, June 08, 2011

Not very many politicians are willing to go this far, presenting a plan that puts their political capital where their ideological mouths have been. I’ll give Pawlenty credit for that, but the plan itself is a work of fiction.

-Solomon Kleinsmith, on Tim Pawlenty's proposal that the tax code be simplified to only two rates, and the elimination of the capital gains tax.


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The Washington Report

President Chooses Next Joint Chiefs Chairman

Monday, May 30, 2011

David Sanger, chief Washington correspondent for The New York Times, joins Kerry Nolan to discuss President Obama's pick for chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.


It's A Free Country ®

Spinning NY26: What Was Behind the Suprising Democratic Win?

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Democrat Kathy Hochul scored an upset win in a special election Tuesday that had long been expected to be an easy victory for Republicans. But GOP candidate Jane Corwin lost her early lead after expressing support for a GOP budget plan that would cut billions from Medicare. The close of polls marked the official start of the partisan spinning about what was behind this Republican loss.

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It's A Free Country ®

Poll: Voters Like Obama's Policies, Not His Posture

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

A new Washington Post/ABC News poll shows President Obama getting better marks than the Congressional Republicans who have frustrated his agenda at every turn.


It's A Free Country ®

The Republican Case for Medicare Vouchers

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Right now we don't have an incentive that is based appropriately in the consumer world. There are no incentives to bring those costs under control, and yet we are faced with a situation in which those restraints will be forced upon the public through mechanisms like [the Affordable Care Act].

— Congresswoman Nan Hayworth (R-NY 19), on The Brian Lehrer Show.

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It's A Free Country ®

The Fiscal Impact of Obama's Budget Speech

Thursday, April 14, 2011

To those people paying the bill, those people under 55, we say, 'You don't get Medicare. You get something less generous, but we don't have any choice.' I think it's deeply unfair to make that big divide and say, 'I've got this great plan, it's really great, it won't harm you, it will save vast amounts of money—but don't worry: so long as you're 55, you won't have to be any part of it.'

David Leonhardt, writer of the "Economic Scene" column for the New York Times, discussing Paul Ryan's budget on The Brian Lehrer Show.

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It's A Free Country ®

The Top Three Ways to Cut Taxes and Still Save Revenue

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

In his 2012 budget proposal, Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI) lays out a plan to lower the top individual and corporate tax rates from 35 percent to 25 percent. This much cutting should mean big revenue losses for the federal government, which already gave up a chunk of its income when officials extended the Bush tax cuts for all income brackets last December. However, Ryan asserts that he can make his cuts revenue neutral by nixing tax expenditures—loopholes, breaks and preferences in the the tax code—simultaneously.

There's just one problem: Ryan has yet to say what those expenditures are.


It's A Free Country ®

Dems Take on Ryan Budget? Unshared Sacrifice

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Do we begin the process of getting government in balance? Only if there's shared sacrifices. The things we didn't like in the 2011 reconciliation was nothing was done in the defense budget. Only a small portion was cut, and yet we continue the process of giving tax cuts to those wealthiest Americans. We're going to change that when we get to the bigger debate.

Bill Pascrell, U.S. Congressman (D-NJ 8) and member of the House Budget Committee and Ways and Means Committee, on The Brian Lehrer Show.

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It's A Free Country ®

Explaining the Deficit

Tuesday, April 12, 2011


The [political] fault lines are here in that the Tea party won a huge victory in the Congressional beat down and when you have someone like Rep. Ryan coming out and touching third rails of government...talking about slashing Medicare, talking about really representing the Tea Party agenda in certain elements, in that you could simultaneously cut the top tax rate and cut spending, you're really forcing the administration's hand. They're king of saying, well we're putting political skin in the game and now we're going to force you to come out and sacrifice some of your fiscal sacred cows.

Roben Farzad, senior writer for Bloomberg Business Week, on The Brian Lehrer Show.

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It's A Free Country ®

Budget Showdowns, Government Shutdowns, and Paul Ryan's Proposal

Wednesday, April 06, 2011

You need to take on entitlements, but you also need to deal with the revenue side of picture. The fact that [Rep. Paul Ryan] left the Bush tax cuts intact certainly skews the program such that people who come out better are people who are richer, and people being asked to shoulder the burden are those on the lower end of the income scale.

John Heileman, national affairs editor for New York magazine, on The Brian Lehrer Show.

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It's A Free Country ®

Obama's Budget, the GOP Budget and Missing Entitlements

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

House Republicans hate President Obama's $3.7 trillion budget. Rep. Paul Ryan has been loud and clear about an alternative he'd like to see implemented. His "Roadmap for America's Future Act" is a proposal that's been around since last year; it's even been in circulation long enough for the Congressional Budget Office to evaluate it and conclude that Ryan's plan would produce surpluses by 2080, whereas the current trajectory suggests deficits at 42 percent of GDP by that time.

So why aren't you hearing widespread GOP support for a proposal that would curb spending and cancel deficits? Simple: Because it privatizes Social Security.