Rep. Paul Ryan of Wisconsin, former vice presidential nominee, came to the CPAC 2013 stage with blaring loud music, amid the cheers and applause of thousands of standing conservatives.
He began by drawing attention to the fact that Senate Democrats passed a budget for the first time in almost 4 years. Then he attacked it. “They call their budget a foundation for growth. … Wow, I feel like saluting already. But when you read it, you find that the Vatican’s not the only place blowing smoke this week.” The Democrats’ budget calls for over $1 trillion in new tax revenue!
Ryan, chairman of the House Budget Committee, just passed his own budget as well. The key? “It’s simple. We stop spending money we don’t have!”
Although it may often seem like a manufactured fiscal crisis, distant from everyday Americans, Ryan argued an economic crisis would be a “moral failure.” The ballooning national debt and government spending will lead to skyrocketing interest rates, leading to real problems for Americans’ standard of living. “A balanced budget is a reasonable goal because it returns government to its proper limits and focus.”
“Work gives people more than a paycheck,” said Ryan. The pride and dignity that result improve community inclusiveness, benefitting society as a whole. A budget that encourages spending outside of our means will harm the important ideal of hard work.
After continually stressing the importance of a balanced budget, Ryan attempted to define the Republican party in one phrase, “We are the party of equal opportunity.”