As has been stated several times since Ryan’s selection, the Romney campaign is running on “Romney’s budget,” not the Ryan budget passed by the House. However, interviews in the last couple days have pointed out that while Romney and Ryan both criticize President Obama for cutting some $700 billion from Medicare to drop it into ObamaCare, Ryan’s budget does something similar in terms of Medicare cuts.
Report from the LA Times:
COLUMBUS, Ohio – Mitt Romney on Wednesday unequivocally disavowed more than $700 billion in Medicare spending cuts proposed by his new running mate, Rep. Paul D. Ryan of Wisconsin.
In an interview on “CBS This Morning,” Romney was asked how he squared his running mate’s plan to cut spending on the popular healthcare program for the elderly with his criticism of President Obama for making the same reductions.
“First of all, Congressman Ryan has joined my campaign, and his campaign is my campaign now, and we’re on exactly the same page,” Romney said in response to anchor Anthony Mason’s question. “And my campaign has made it very clear: The president’s cuts of $716 billion to Medicare – those cuts are to be restored if I become president and Paul Ryan becomes vice president.”
The exchange underscored the political challenge that Romney faces in explaining his standing on Medicare after putting Ryan on the Republican ticket.
President Obama and other Democrats have accused Ryan of trying to “end Medicare as we know it” by proposing a system of vouchers for future seniors to buy health insurance in the private market as an alternative to the program as it now stands. Democrats say the elderly would wind up paying more for less.
Ryan’s plan to revamp Medicare – which included Obama’s $716 billion in cuts to the projected growth of Medicare – was a central feature of a federal budget proposed by the congressman and passed by the Republican-controlled House in April. Romney has said he would sign it as president. The voucher system would begin in 10 years.
Where it gets sticky is that Romney gave an endorsement of the Ryan plan as passed by the House back during the primaries. That plan included cuts to Medicare. Now, Romney is hammering President Obama over cutting Medicare while he, at one time, voice support for a plan which did the same. Therein lies the political rub.