Magazine May 2, 2011, Issue

Ryan vs. the Mythmakers

Wisconsin congressman Paul Ryan on Capitol Hill, April 5, 2011 (Kevin Lamarque/Reuters)
Spurious claims, debunked

If you’ve been following the debate over the House Republican budget proposed by Wisconsin congressman Paul Ryan, you have probably heard that it savagely cuts programs for the poor in order to fund tax cuts for the rich, that its numbers don’t add up, and that in the short run it expands the deficits. These claims, though asserted confidently, either depend on highly contestable assumptions or are demonstrably untrue.

• David Frum writes in The Week that Ryan’s “debt reduction plan actually increases the debt over the medium term — by even more [than] President Obama’s budget would.”

The CBO’s actual projections for

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Ramesh Ponnuru is a senior editor for National Review, a columnist for Bloomberg Opinion, a visiting fellow at the American Enterprise Institute, and a senior fellow at the National Review Institute.

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