The much despised Paul Ryan budget plan for 2012 seems to be twisting in the wind on the GOP side of the Senate since Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell (KY) has declined to whip his colleagues on the vote, and has indicated to them that they should vote as they see fit. This is purely a matter of practicality, because the fear is that those who vote for it will pay at the polls. Which, of course, they probably will.
The three top-ranking Republicans in the Senate, McConnell, Jon Kyl (AZ), and Lamar Alexander (TN), have all said that they will vote for the Ryan plan, you know, the one that would end Medicare as we know it.
An anonymous GOP senator’s observation on the Ryan plan caught my attention:
One GOP senator who spoke on the condition of anonymity expressed his belief that Ryan made a serious tactical mistake by spelling out Medicare reforms in his budget plan.
“All Ryan had to do was set an overall number and leave it up to the policymaking committees how to come up with the savings,” said the lawmaker. “The important number to focus on is that the federal government takes in $2.2 trillion and spends $3.7 trillion.”
Probably true, and a tactic that we’ll need to watch out for in future budget plans in order to avoid surprises.