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    Paul Ryan
    From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
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    For other people named Paul Ryan, see Paul Ryan (disambiguation).
    Paul Ryan
    A portrait photograph of Paul Ryan
    Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
    from Wisconsin's 1st district
    Incumbent
    Assumed office
    January 3, 1999
    Preceded by Mark Neumann
    Chairman of the House Budget Committee
    Incumbent
    Assumed office
    January 3, 2011
    Preceded by John Spratt
    Personal details
    Born Paul Davis Ryan
    January 29, 1970 (age 42)
    Janesville, Wisconsin, U.S.
    Political party Republican
    Spouse(s) Janna Little
    Children Elizabeth
    Charles
    Samuel
    Alma mater Miami University (B.A.)
    Religion Roman Catholicism
    Website Congressional website
    Paul Ryan official portrait.jpg This article is part of a series about
    Paul Ryan
    Paul Ryan
    Paul Ryan
    Romney?Ryan campaign, 2012
    Wisconsin's 1st congressional district
    Electoral history ? The Path to Prosperity

    Paul Davis Ryan (born January 29, 1970) is an American politician and seven-term United States Representative serving Wisconsin's 1st congressional district since January 1999. On August 11, 2012, Mitt Romney announced Ryan as his running mate,[1][2] making Ryan the presumptive nominee of the Republican Party for Vice President of the United States in the 2012 election.[3][4]

    Born and raised in Janesville, Wisconsin, Ryan earned a B.A. degree from Miami University in Ohio. Following his studies, he worked in Washington as an aide to Republican U.S. Senator Bob Kasten of Wisconsin, as legislative director for Senator Sam Brownback of Kansas, and as a speechwriter for former U.S. Representative and 1996 Republican vice presidential nominee Jack Kemp of New York. In 1998, Ryan won election to the U.S. House, succeeding Republican Mark Neumann.

    In 2004, Ryan proposed a plan to privatize Social Security that entailed moving about half of workers' payroll taxes into private investment accounts. President George W. Bush then proposed an alternative plan but neither plan became law. In 2007 Ryan was named Chairman of the House Budget Committee. In 2008, Ryan and fellow Congressmen Eric Cantor and Kevin McCarthy developed a plan that would replace Medicare with direct payments to seniors to buy private insurance and that would replace Medicaid with lump sum payments to the states. The plan also featured a scaled-back proposal to reform Social Security. The plan was offered as an alternative to President Obama's budget in 2010. In 2011 some portions of the plan, including the privatization of Social Security, were removed after receiving feedback from colleagues.[5]

    In March of 2011, Ryan unveiled an updated budget proposal that would offer seniors the choice of receiving payments to purchase private health care insurance or staying on the traditional Medicare plan. The plan would not generally affect benefits for those currently over the age of 55, though it would arguably result in an increase in out-of-pocket payments by seniors for prescription drugs and wellness visits.[6] Medicaid and the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (Food Stamp Program) would be turned into a block-grant system for each state. The plan would also close tax loopholes, end certain deductions while decreasing corporate taxes from 35 to 25 percent and diverting non-defense budget cuts to defense spending.[7][8]
    Contents

    1 Early life and education
    2 Political philosophy
    3 Early political career
    4 U.S. House of Representatives
    4.1 Elections
    4.2 Tenure
    4.3 Foreign policy
    4.4 Committee assignments
    4.5 Caucus memberships
    5 Political positions
    5.1 Fiscal, education, and health care policy
    5.1.1 2008 Budget proposal
    5.1.2 2012 Budget proposal
    5.2 Social, environmental, and science issues
    5.3 Foreign and military policy
    6 2012 vice presidential campaign
    7 Personal life
    8 Awards and honors
    9 Electoral history
    10 References
    11 External links

    Early life and education

    Ryan was born and raised in Janesville, Wisconsin, the youngest of the four children of Elizabeth A. "Betty" (n?e Hutter) and Paul Murray Ryan, a lawyer.[9][10][11] He is a fifth generation Wisconsinite.[9][12] His father was of Irish ancestry and his mother is of German and some English descent.[13] His great-grandfather, Patrick William Ryan (1858?1917), founded P. W. Ryan and Sons (now Ryan Incorporated Central), originally a railroad and road construction business, in 1884.[14][15][16] Ryan's grandfather was appointed U.S. Attorney for the Western District of Wisconsin by President Calvin Coolidge.[17]

    Because Ryan shares his first name with his father, he was given the nickname, "P.D." (for Paul Davis), but it was often mistaken for "Petey," a name Ryan disliked.[18] Ryan and his family often went on hiking and skiing trips in the Colorado Rocky Mountains.[10][17]

    Ryan attended St. Mary's Catholic School in Janesville where he played on the seventh-grade basketball team.[19] He attended Joseph A. Craig High School in Janesville, where he was elected junior class president. This made him prom king and gave him his first political position, a seat on the school board representing his high school.[5] After his sophomore year he worked the grill at McDonald's.[5] He was on his high school's ski, track and varsity soccer teams and played basketball in a Catholic recreational league.[20][21][22] He also participated in several academic and social clubs including the Model United Nations.[20][5]

    When he was 16, he found his 55-year-old father dead in bed of a heart attack.[5] His grandfather and great-grandfather had had fatal heart attacks at ages 57, and 59 respectively, inspiring Ryan's later interest in health and exercise.[17] After his father's death, Ryan's grandmother, who suffered from Alzheimer's disease, moved in with his family and he helped care for her.[5] His father's death provided Ryan with Social Security survivor's benefits until his 18th birthday, which he saved to pay for his college education.[18][23][24]

    Ryan majored in economics and political science at Miami University, in Oxford, Ohio,[25] where he became interested in the writings of Friedrich Hayek, Ludwig von Mises, and Milton Friedman.[5] He often visited the office of professor Richard Hart to discuss the ideas of economists such as Friedman and Hayek, and the writings of Ayn Rand.[26] Hart was a libertarian who introduced Ryan to the National Review.[5] Ryan also studied at the Washington Semester program at American University.[27] He worked summers as a salesman for Oscar Mayer, even driving the Wienermobile once.[17][28][26] During his junior year at Miami University, Ryan worked as an intern in the D.C. offices of Senator Bob Kasten of Wisconsin,[29] a job he landed with Hart's recommendation.[5] While a student, Ryan also did volunteer work for the congressional campaign of John Boehner.[26] He was a member of the College Republicans,[30] and the Delta Tau Delta social fraternity.[26] Ryan was awarded his B.A. in 1992 with a double major in economics and political science.[25]
    Political philosophy

    At a Washington, D.C. gathering celebrating what would have been Ayn Rand's 100th birthday, Ryan credited Rand as inspiring him to get involved in public service, stating that "The reason I got involved in public service, by and large, if I had to credit one thinker, one person, it would be Ayn Rand,"[31] In a 2005 speech at the Atlas Society, he said he grew up reading Rand, and that her books taught him about his value system and beliefs.[32][33] Ryan tried to get all of the congressional interns in his office to read Rand's writing. He also gave copies of her novel Atlas Shrugged to his staff as Christmas presents, he told the Weekly Standard in 2003.[34][35]

    In 2009, Ryan said "What's unique about what's happening today in government, in the world, in America, is that it's as if we're living in an Ayn Rand novel right now. I think Ayn Rand did the best job of anybody to build a moral case of capitalism, and that morality of capitalism is under assault."[36]

    In April 2012, responding to criticism from Catholic leaders over his budget and Medicare proposals, Ryan rejected Rand's philosophy as an atheistic one, as it "reduces human interactions down to mere contracts."[37] He also called the reports of his adherence to Rand's views to be an "urban legend" and stated that he was deeply influenced by his Roman Catholic faith and by Thomas Aquinas.[38]

    Yaron Brook, president of the Ayn Rand Institute, says Ryan is not a Rand disciple, and that some of his proposals do not follow Rand's philosophy of limited government; Brook refers to Ryan as a "fiscal moderate."[39]
    Early political career

    Betty Ryan reportedly urged her son to accept a congressional position as a staff economist attached to Kasten's office, which he did after graduating in 1992.[29][40] In his early years working on Capitol Hill, Ryan supplemented his income by working as a waiter, as a fitness trainer and at various other side jobs.[17][28]

    A few months after Kasten was defeated by Democrat Russ Feingold in the 1992 election, Ryan became a speechwriter for Empower America (now FreedomWorks), a conservative advocacy group founded by Jack Kemp, Jeane Kirkpatrick, and William Bennett.[17][41][42] Ryan later worked as a speechwriter for Kemp, the Republican vice presidential candidate in the 1996 United States presidential election. Kemp became Ryan's mentor, and Ryan cites him as a "huge influence."[41][43] Ryan later worked for U.S. Senator Sam Brownback of Kansas before returned to Wisconsin in 1997, where he worked for a year as a marketing consultant for Ryan Incorporated Central, his relatives' construction company.[5][17][44][41]
    U.S. House of Representatives
    Elections

    Ryan was first elected to the House in 1998, when two-term incumbent Mark Neumann retired from his seat in order to make an ultimately unsuccessful bid for the U.S. Senate. Ryan won the Republican primary over 29-year-old pianist Michael J. Logan of Twin Lakes and the general election against Democratic opponent Lydia Spottswood.[45] He became the second-youngest member of the House.[5]

    Ryan successfully defended his seat against Democratic challenger Jeffrey C. Thomas in 2000, 2002, 2004, and 2006.[46] In 2002, Ryan had also faced Libertarian candidate George Meyers. Ryan defeated Democratic nominee Marge Krupp in the 2008 general election in his district.[46]

    Ryan defeated Democratic nominee John Heckenlively and the Libertarian nominee Joseph Kexel in the 2010 general election in his district.

    Ryan faces Rob Zerban (D) and Keith Deschler (Libertarian) in the 2012 Congressional elections. Under Wisconsin election law, Ryan is allowed to run concurrently for vice president as he competes for his eighth term in Congress.[47] Ryan has over $5.4 million in his Congressional campaign account, more than any other House member.[48][49]
    Tenure

    Early in Ryan's congressional career, he held office hours in some remote parts of his district in an old truck converted into a mobile office.[18]

    In 2011, he was selected to deliver the Republican response to the State of the Union address.[50] In 2012, he accused the nation's top military leaders of using "smoke and mirrors" to remain under budget limits passed by Congress.[51][52] Ryan later said that he misspoke on the issue and called General Martin Dempsey, the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, to apologize for his comments.[53]

    During his 13 years in the House, Ryan has sponsored some 71 bills or amendments,[54] of which two were ultimately enacted into law.[55] One, passed in July 2000, renamed a post office in Ryan's district; the other, passed in December 2008, lowered the excise tax on arrow shafts.[56][57] Ryan has also co-sponsored 975 bills, 22% of which were sponsored by Democrats.[55]
    Foreign policy

    Ryan has been primarily involved in budget matters and has little foreign policy experience.[58] Critics noted this, with former Democratic congressman and former ambassador to India Timothy J. Roemer telling Reuters: "I think his experience as a vice presidential candidate is thin; or for a future president and commander-in-chief, it's virtually absent."[59] Senior Romney adviser Eric Fehrnstrom defended Ryan, stating that his position as House Budget Committee chairman has given him intimate knowledge of defense spending and initiatives and adding that Ryan has been in Congress for 14 years, "longer than Barack Obama when he decided to run for president."[60] During his tenure in the Congress, Ryan has participated in seven trips abroad as a member of a congressional delegation.[61] Reviewing the history of past presidential tickets, Jonathan Bernstein concluded that "depending on how one scores these things," Romney/Ryan is "certainly the ticket with the least foreign policy and national security experience since at least 1948, and perhaps as far back as 1912."[62]
    Committee assignments

    Committee on the Budget (Chairman)
    Committee on Ways and Means
    Subcommittee on Health

    Caucus memberships

    House Republican Caucus
    Caucus of House Conservatives Republican Study Committee[63]
    International Conservation Caucus
    Middle East Economic Partnership Caucus
    Sportsmen's Caucus (Co-Chair)

    Political positions

    Ryan has sided with a majority of his party in 93% of House votes in which he has participated, and sided with the majority vote of all House votes 95% of the time with the 111th Congress.[64]

    The 2011 National Journal Vote Ratings, which rate members of Congress by voting record, rated Paul Ryan 68.2 on the conservative scale, being more conservative than 68% of the full House, and ranked as the 150th most conservative member based on roll-call votes.[65]
    Fiscal, education, and health care policy

    Ryan, "though best known as an architect of conservative fiscal policy,"[66], has also been described as a "big-spending conservative."[67] He voted for the two Bush tax cuts (in 2001 and 2003), the 2003 bill that created the Medicare Part D prescription drug benefit,[68] the Troubled Asset Relief Program, and the 2008 $700 billion bank bailout.[69][70] Ryan was one of 23 Republicans in Congress to vote for the auto industry bailout.[71][72][73] Ryan also voted against the Bowles-Simpson deficit reduction plan. A number of commentators have criticized Ryan's votes for these deficit-causing policies during the George W. Bush administration as inconsistent with fiscal conservatism.[74][75][76][77]

    President Obama initially saw Ryan as "someone he could possibly work with to reverse the building federal debt."[78] Speaking of Ryan's budget proposal, President Obama called it a "serious proposal" and found both points of agreement and disagreement, saying "some ideas in there that I would agree with, but there are some ideas that we should have a healthy debate about because I don?t agree with them."[79] However, in 2011 President Obama criticized Ryan as being "not on the level" for describing himself as a fiscal conservative while voting for these policies, as well as two "unpaid for" wars.[80] Columnist Ezra Klein wrote in 2012 that "If you know about Paul Ryan at all, you probably know him as a deficit hawk. But Ryan has voted to increase deficits and expand government spending too many times for that to be his north star. Rather, the common thread throughout his career is his desire to remake the basic architecture of the federal government."[81]

    In 1999, Ryan voted in favor of the Gramm?Leach?Bliley Act, which repealed certain provisions of the Depression-era Glass?Steagall Act that regulated banking.[82] Ryan sponsored a 2008 bill that would repeal the requirement that the Federal Reserve System reduce unemployment.[83]

    Ryan voted against the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act of 2009[84][85]. Ryan also voted against the Credit Cardholders' Bill of Rights Act of 2009,[86] and the Dodd?Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act, which Ryan characterized as "class warfare."[87]

    Ryan voted against the 2010 health care reform act supported by President Obama and Congressional Democrats) in 2010,[88] and to repeal it in 2012.[89][90]

    In 2004 and 2005, Ryan pushed the Bush administration to propose the privatization of Social Security. Ryan's proposal ultimately failed when it did not gain the support of the then-Republican presidential administration. [5]

    Ryan's budget proposals "would mean significant cutbacks for education across the board."[91] Rick Hess of the American Enterprise Institute notes that on "'education, training, employment, and social services,' the Ryan budget would spend 33% less" than Obama's budget plan over the next decade.[92] In particular, the Ryan plan would lower the income level qualification from $33,000 to $23,000 for the Pell Grant program, and set a maximum grant of $5,550, about one-third the average total year cost of college, a historically low percentage. According to an analysis by the Education Trust, this would over the next 10 years result in more than 1 million students losing Pell grants. Additionally, under Ryan's plan, student loans would begin to accrue interest while students are still in school.[93][94] Ryan states that his education policy is to "allocate our limited financial resources effectively and efficiently to improve education."[95] ****** Weissmann of The Atlantic said that Ryan's vision on education policy is to "cut and privatize."[96]

    Ryan voted for the No Child Left Behind Act in 2001.[97] Ryan is a supporter of for-profit colleges and opposed the gainful employment rule, which would have denied federal aid to vocational schools whose students were unable to obtain employment.[96] Ryan is a supporter of private school vouchers and voted to extend the D.C. Opportunity Scholarship Program in 2011.[96] The National Education Association teachers' union has criticized Ryan's positions on education.[97]

    Ryan has consistently supported giving the president line-item veto power.[98]
    2008 Budget proposal
    Main article: The Path to Prosperity
    Ryan speaking at the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) in Washington, D.C. on February 10, 2011.

    On May 21, 2008, Ryan introduced H.R. 6110, The Path to Prosperity: Roadmap for America's Future Act of 2008, commonly referred to as the "Ryan budget."[99] This proposed legislation outlined changes to entitlement spending, including a controversial proposal to replace Medicare with a voucher program for seniors.[5][100][101] The Roadmap found only eight sponsors and did not move past committee.[5][102]

    On April 1, 2009, Ryan introduced his alternative to the 2010 United States federal budget. This alternative budget would have eliminated the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, lowered the top tax rate to 25%, introduced an 8.5% value-added consumption tax, and imposed a five-year spending freeze on all discretionary spending.[103] It would have also phased out Medicare's traditional fee-for-service model, instead offering fixed sums in the form of vouchers for Medicare beneficiaries with which to buy private insurance, starting in 2021.[104] The federal government would no longer pay for Medicare benefits for persons born after 1958.[104] The plan attracted criticism since the voucher payments would not be set to increase as medical costs increase, leaving beneficiaries partially uninsured.[104] Ryan's proposed budget would also have allowed taxpayers to opt out of the federal income taxation system with itemized deductions, and instead pay a flat 10 percent of adjusted gross income up to $100,000 and 25 percent on any remaining income.[105] Ryan's proposed budget was criticized by opponents for the lack of concrete numbers.[106] It was ultimately rejected in the House by a vote of 293?137, with 38 Republicans in opposition.[107]

    On January 27, 2010, Ryan released a modified version of his Roadmap, H.R. 4529: Roadmap for America's Future Act of 2010.[108][109] The modified plan would provide across-the-board tax cuts by reducing income tax rates; eliminate income taxes on capital gains, dividends, and interest; and abolish the corporate income tax, estate tax, and Alternative Minimum Tax. The plan would privatize a portion of Social Security,[110][111] eliminate the tax exclusion for employer-sponsored health insurance,[111] and privatize Medicare.[110][111] Chief actuary of Medicare Rick Foster compared Ryan's "Roadmap" with the 2010 healthcare reform in congressional hearings, stating that while both had "some potential" to make healthcare prices "more sustainable", he was more "confident" in Ryan's plan.[112]

    Economist and columnist Paul Krugman, citing data from the Tax Policy Center, criticized a Congressional Budget Office (CBO) report that said that Ryan's plan would cut the deficit in half by 2020. Krugman opined that the CBO had considered the "effects of [Ryan's] proposed spending cuts ? period. It didn't address the revenue losses from his tax cuts."[113] Krugman further called the plan a "fraud" because it relies on severe cuts in domestic discretionary spending without specifying the programs to be cut, and on "dismantling Medicare as we know it," which is politically unrealistic.[113] In contrast, columnist Ramesh Ponnuru, writing in the National Review, argued that Ryan's plan would lead to less debt than current budgets.[114] Economist Ted Gayer wrote that "Ryan's vision of broad-based tax reform, which essentially would shift us toward a consumption tax... makes a useful contribution to this debate."[115]

    On April 11, 2011, Ryan introduced H.Con.Res. 34, a federal budget for the fiscal year 2012.[116] The House passed this Ryan Plan on April 15, 2011, by a vote of 235?193. Four Republicans joined all House Democrats in voting against it.[117] A month later, the bill was defeated in the Senate by a vote of 57?40, with five Republicans and most Democrats in opposition.[118]
    2012 Budget proposal
    Ryan with President Obama during a bipartisan meeting on health insurance reform, February 25, 2010.

    On March 23, 2012 Ryan introduced a new version of his federal budget for the fiscal year 2013.[119] On March 29, 2012, the House of Representatives passed the resolution along partisan lines, 228 yeas to 191 nays; ten Republicans voted against the bill, along with all the House Democrats.[120] Ryan's budget seeks to reduce all discretionary spending in the budget from 12.5% of GDP in 2011 to 3.75% of GDP in 2050.[121]

    An analysis by the CBO showed that the Ryan plan would not balance the budget for at least 28 years, partly because the changes in Medicare would not affect anyone now older than 55.[122] Former U.S. Comptroller General David Walker and Maya MacGuineas, president of the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget, praised the budget for making tough choices. Walker believes it needs to go even further, tackling Social Security and defense spending.[123] In contrast, David Stockman, Director of the Office of Management and Budget under President Ronald Reagan, has declared that Ryan's budget "is devoid of credible math or hard policy choices" and would "do nothing to reverse the nation's economic decline and arrest its fiscal collapse."[124] Ezra Klein also criticized the budget for making "unrealistic assumptions."[121] The Center on Budget and Policy Priorities was highly critical of Ryan's budget proposal, stating that it would shift income to the wealthy while increasing poverty and inequality.[125]

    The 2012 Ryan budget was criticized by the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops for failing to protect the poor and vulnerable.[126] Faculty and administrators of Georgetown University challenged Ryan's "continuing misuse of Catholic teaching to defend" his plan, [127][128] but Ryan rejected their criticism.[129]

    Ryan's budget "envisions continued increases in Pentagon spending" and "significant cuts to the much smaller appropriations for the State Department and foreign aid," with diplomacy and development spending being reduced sharply.[130]
    Social, environmental, and science issues

    Ryan describes himself as "as pro-life as a person gets"[131] and has been described as an "ardent, unwavering foe of abortion rights."[66] The National Right to Life Committee has given Ryan a "100 percent pro-life voting record" since he entered the House in 1999; NARAL Pro-Choice America has noted that Ryan has "cast 59 votes on reproductive rights while in Congress and not one has been pro-choice."[132] He believes that a woman should not be allowed to end a pregnancy even if it resulted from rape or incest.[133][134] During Ryan's 1998 campaign for Congress, he "expressed his willingness to let states criminally prosecute women who have abortions," telling the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel at the time that he "would let states decide what criminal penalties would be attached to abortions," and while not stating that he supports jailing women who have an abortion, stated: "if it's illegal, it's illegal."[133] Ryan voted to cut off federal funding for Planned Parenthood and Title X family planning programs.[66][135] He cosponsored the Sanctity of Life Act, which would provide that fertilized eggs "shall have all the legal and constitutional attributes and privileges of personhood" and would have given "the Congress, each State, the District of Columbia, and all United States territories [have] the authority to protect the lives of all human beings residing in its respective jurisdictions."[136] This could lead to laws that would "criminalize all abortion, as well as in vitro fertilization and some forms of birth control."[137][138] Ryan has also supported legislation that would impose criminal penalties for certain doctors who perform "partial-birth abortions."[66]

    He opposes same-sex marriage, supports a constitutional ban on same-sex marriage, opposed the repeal of the don't ask, don't tell policy, opposes allowing same-sex couples to adopt, and voted against the Matthew Shepard and James Byrd, Jr. Hate Crimes Prevention Act.[139][140] Ryan voted in favor of the Employment Non-Discrimination Act in 2007.[139] The Human Rights Campaign, a GLBT rights organization, has consistently given Ryan a 0/100 rating on its legislative scorecard.[141]

    Ryan has "championed the rights of gun owners"[66] and has been described as "very, very pro-gun."[142] He voted against a bill for stronger background check requirements for purchases at gun shows and supports federal concealed-carry reciprocity legislation, which would allow a person with a permit to carry a concealed firearm in one state to carry a firearm in every other state, a top National Rifle Association (NRA) priority.[142] Ryan, who owns a rifle and a shotgun, is an NRA member and has received an "A" rating from the NRA's Institute for Legislative Action and has been endorsed by the organization "every cycle he's been in Congress."[143]

    Ryan favors a constitutional amendment to ban flag-burning and voted to withdraw federal funding of NPR.[139] He voted against the DREAM Act, a bill that would provide conditional permanent residency to illegal immigrants who were brought to the United States as children if they attend college or serve in the military, are of good moral character, and meet other criteria.[144] Ryan has said that we "must first secure the border and stem the flow of illegal immigration, and then work to increase legal immigration through an enforceable guest worker program" before pursuing a "piecemeal" reform such as the DREAM Act.[145] He also voted in favor of the Secure Fence Act of 2006.[146]

    The League of Conservation Voters (LCV), the Sierra Club, and other environmentalists have criticized Ryan's record on environmental issues, with the Congressman earning a 3 percent on the LCV 2011 National Environmental Scorecard.[147] Ryan is a skeptic of anthropogenic climate change.[147][148] He opposes cap and trade and opposed the American Clean Energy and Security Act of 2009.[148] In an 2009 editorial, Ryan asserted that climatologists have "used statistical tricks to distort their findings and intentionally mislead the public on the issue of climate change" and he criticized the EPA's classification of carbon dioxide as a pollutant.[148] Ryan supports a 10-year $40 million tax break for the petroleum industry, and has proposed cutting funding for renewable energy research and subsidies. [149]
    Foreign and military policy

    Ryan has been described by Larry Sabato as "just a generic Republican on foreign policy."[150][59]

    Ryan voted in 2001 and 2004 to end the embargo on Cuba,[151][152][153][154] but later reversed his positions, and since 2007 has voted against easing the embargo.[154] In 2008 Ryan told the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "If we're going to have free trade with China, why not Cuba?"[153]

    Ryan was a "reliable supporter of the [George W. Bush] administration's foreign policy priorities" who voted for the 2002 Iraq Resolution, authorizing President George W. Bush to use military force in Iraq.[61] Ryan also voted for the 2007 troop surge in Iraq.[61] In May 2012, Ryan voted for H.R. 4310, which would increase defense spending, including spending for the Afghanistan War and for various weapon systems, to the level of $642 billion ? $8 billion more than previous spending levels.[155]

    In 2009, Ryan termed the Obama administrations' "reset" of relations with Russia as "appeasement."[130] Daniel Larison of the The American Conservative wrote that Ryan "seems to conceive of U.S. power abroad mostly in terms of military strength" and "truly is a product of the era of George W. Bush."[130]
    2012 vice presidential campaign
    See also: Mitt Romney presidential campaign, 2012
    Mitt Romney with Paul Ryan after introducing him as his running mate, for the 2012 presidential election, in Norfolk, Virginia on August 11, 2012.

    On August 11, 2012 the Romney campaign officially announced Ryan as its choice for Vice President through its "Mitt's VP" mobile app[156] as well as by the social networking service Twitter,[157] about 90 minutes before Romney's in-person introduction. Before the official announcement in Norfolk, it was reported that Romney had decided to choose Ryan on August 1, 2012, the day after returning from his foreign trip through the United Kingdom, Poland and Israel.[158] A week later, The Wall Street Journal published an editorial in favor of Romney choosing Ryan.[159] On August 11, 2012, Ryan formally accepted Romney's invitation to join his campaign as his running mate, in front of the USS Wisconsin in Norfolk, Virginia.[156] Ryan is the major parties' first-ever vice-presidential candidate from Wisconsin.[160]

    A subsequent USA Today/Gallup poll found that 39% thought Ryan was an "excellent" or "pretty good" vice presidential choice, compared to 42% who felt it was a "fair" or "poor" choice, the least positive response to a vice-presidential pick since Dan Quayle was chosen in 1988.[161]

    According to a statistical-historical analysis conducted by Nate Silver, "Ryan is the most conservative Republican member of Congress to be picked for the vice-presidential slot since at least 1900" and "is also more conservative than any Democratic nominee [for vice president who previously served in the Congress] was liberal, meaning that he is the furthest from the center" of any vice presidential candidate chosen from Congress since the turn of the 20th century.[162] This analysis, using the DW-NOMINATE statistical system,[162] has been described as "one of the more statistically rigorous approaches to Ryan's congressional voting record."[163] Political scientist Eric Schickler commented that while Ryan "may well be the most conservative vice presidential nominee in decades," the NOMINATE methodology "is not suited to making claims about the relative liberalism or conservatism of politicians" over a long time span.[163]
    Personal life

    Ryan married Janna Little, a tax attorney,[18] in December 2000.[9] An Oklahoma native, Little is a graduate of Wellesley College and George Washington University Law School, and a cousin of Representative Dan Boren of Oklahoma, a Democrat.[18] The outdoorsman Ryan proposed to her at a favorite fishing spot, Big St. Germain Lake in northern Wisconsin.[18] The Ryans live in a six-bedroom, seven-bathroom, two and a half story, Georgian revival style brick home in the Courthouse Hill historic district of Janesville, Wisconsin.[20] They have three children: Elizabeth Anne, Charles Wilson, and Samuel Lowery.[164]

    Because of a family history of heart disease,[165] Ryan is a fitness enthusiast. He has said he is careful about what he eats, performs an intense cross-training routine known as P90X most mornings, and has made close to 40 climbs of Colorado's Fourteeners (14,000-foot peaks).[17][166]Ryan is a hunter and fisherman who makes his own bratwurst and Polish sausage.[11] A bowhunter, he is a member of the Janesville Bowmen, an archery association.[18] Ryan is a fan of the Green Bay Packers.[167] His musical preferences include Beethoven, Rage Against the Machine and Led Zeppelin.[168][169] In an op-ed in Rolling Stone magazine, Rage Against the Machine guitarist Tom Morello criticized Ryan and wrote that "Paul Ryan is the Embodiment of the Machine Our Music Rages Against."[170]

    A Roman Catholic, Ryan is still a member of St. John Vianney Catholic Church in Janesville, where he was an altar boy.[171] [172]
    Awards and honors

    2004, 2010 ? National Federation of Independent Business Guardian of Small Business Award [173][174]
    2009 ? National Association of Manufacturers Award for Manufacturing Legislative Excellence [175]
    2009 ? Honorary Degree, Miami University [25][176]
    2010 ? International Franchise Association Legislator of the Year Award [177]
    2011 ? Claremont Institute Statesmanship Award [178]
    2011 ? Fiscy Award for responsible financial stewardship and fiscal discipline in government.[179][180]
    2011 ? Jack Kemp Foundation Leadership Award [181]
    2011 ? Mason Contractors Association of America Freedom and Prosperity Award [182]
    2012 ? Chair, Honorary Board of the Archery Trade Association [183]

    Electoral history
    See also: Electoral history of Paul Ryan
    Year Office District Democrat Republican Other
    1998 U.S. House of Representatives Wisconsin 1st District Lydia Spottswood 43% Paul Ryan 57%
    2000 U.S. House of Representatives Wisconsin 1st District Jeffrey Thomas 33% Paul Ryan 67%
    2002 U.S. House of Representatives Wisconsin 1st District Jeffrey Thomas 31% Paul Ryan 67% George Meyers (L) 2%
    2004 U.S. House of Representatives Wisconsin 1st District Jeffrey Thomas 33% Paul Ryan 65%
    2006 U.S. House of Representatives Wisconsin 1st District Jeffrey Thomas 37% Paul Ryan 63%
    2008 U.S. House of Representatives Wisconsin 1st District Marge Kru
     
  3. mariley85

    mariley85 Well-Known Member

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    he's smarter than romney, obama, and biden. that's for sure.
     
  4. Tom Brown

    Tom Brown Epsilon contributor

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    Another round of tax cuts. :thumbsup
     
  5. Abc123

    Abc123 Banned

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    Paul Ryan is about reducing future spending, not current spending. PR= douche bag.
     
  6. Faceaz

    Faceaz Well-Known Member

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    Why is that? Is it because he voted for all of Bush Jr.s tax cuts & combined spending which added nearly 7 trillion to the national debt? That Wiki story said it: A big spending (so called) conservative.
     
  7. thetub

    thetub Well-Known Member

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    Faceaz , the sad thing is the budget plan he has would cut spending more than any one of the yo yos running? Be it its not enough, none of the guys running are gonna do it. Its a shit budget, but what else is there to go with?
     
  8. thetub

    thetub Well-Known Member

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    Tom, I do not understand. Why would you give these idiots more money?
    Its giving them a bonus for screwing up. Just like these public stock CEOS.


    You give more ,they are gonna spend more. Thats how their budgets are set.
    "We gotta spend it all , so we could get more next year"
     
  9. Tom Brown

    Tom Brown Epsilon contributor

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    I think he's a dip shit. More tax cuts? With record deficits and a staggering debt? That's insane. Nobody ever tax cutted their debt away.

    ... and then there is the Republican mantra of, "No tax cut has ever added to the debt." They were throwing that around like it was the only lighter in a crack house last election. What a crock of shit.

    I will give Ryan this: He went out on a limb by saying he would close tax loopholes. Almost everyone seems to know this needs to be done but Ryan he is the only one talking about it. Kudos to Paul Ryan. That is a truly conservative idea but not a Republican one. It breaks Grover Norquist's pledge that almost every Republican has taken. ... so on that level, I admire Ryan and respect what he said about creating a more evenly carried tax load.

    Level the playing field. Make the system fair. Get out of the way of competition. If I believed anyone would do it, I would champion that person. I don't, however. I don't think Romney/Ryan will improve the financial situation and I don't think Obama/Biden will improve the financial situation. Not significantly.

    tubby, I really want to see your country prosper. I would love to see the radicals pushed to the side where they belong and the political rift closed. You're almost at the point of civil war now. It's terrifying. If you could be one country again, unified, and find some prosperity, that would be a dream come true for me and a lot of people.

    The United States of America has my best wish. You have a lot of great people and a beautiful country. This Hatfields and McCoys situation is ripping apart something great.
     
    Last edited: Aug 18, 2012
  10. thetub

    thetub Well-Known Member

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    Tom, its funny you called me Tubby. I did gain some weight. Everyone who's seen me lately , told me Im a little tubby now. Kinda pissed and touchy about lately.:grumble:
     
  11. jake

    jake Banned

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    I absolutely agree everyone pays the same percent on income, no exceptions!
     
  12. Tom Brown

    Tom Brown Epsilon contributor

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    Really? Even the richest and poorest? Like 12% for all, or something like that?

    What about deductions? Any?
     
  13. thetub

    thetub Well-Known Member

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    Tom I would shit can deductions and loophole crap. Simplify the tax code. Just like a straight sales tax. Gonna be alot of pissed CPA's though.
     
  14. thetub

    thetub Well-Known Member

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    I would also have a mandatory independent and transparent Audit of Government spending every year. I would have them post it on the computer every year, or even better FACEBOOK it. Maybe all these tards will see how the Government is literally pissing YOUR money away.
     
  15. 2Driver

    2Driver Well-Known Member

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    Maybe giving your Canadian Government more money to solve problems works, but here in the US it doesn?t - that the diff.

    The US government is a sucking hole of waste and favoritism, that's why when we hear from the libs that we need to throw more of our money at the government to solve something like education or the postal service, we call bull shit.
     
  16. jake

    jake Banned

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    yep! all, they use the infrastructure just like me. why give it to them for free, they won't appreciate it, take care of it or respect it. Besides, I'm not responsible for them being poor, generally they are.

    no deductions
     
  17. Tom Brown

    Tom Brown Epsilon contributor

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    When the economy collapses, interest rates skyrocket, and currency starts deflating like an Uzi ventilated life raft, guess who is going to get hurt?

    The point here is the government can rip off the system and there is nothing you can do about it beyond voting carefully. They are shielded more than you are.
     

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