Walker praises Ryan for budget deal
- Associated Press
- December 15, 2013 - 2:10 PM
MILWAUKEE — Gov. Scott Walker praised fellow Wisconsin Republican Paul Ryan on Sunday for the congressman's role in brokering a bipartisan budget bill that's been blasted by a number of conservatives.
Walker, who has argued that the GOP's best bet for winning the presidency in 2016 will be a governor from outside of Washington, said on NBC's "Meet the Press" that Ryan went beyond the traditional role of a member of Congress to provide leadership on the bill that passed the House Thursday and awaits Senate action. He also said Republicans hold 30 governorships because they've been stressing reform, not austerity.
"Paul is one of those rare people in Washington who's acting more like a governor than just a member of Congress," Walker said.
The governor said retaking control of the Senate in 2014 will be the key to getting budgets that more conservatives can embrace.
"For those of us who believe the federal government's too big, too intrusive, too involved in our lives, what it tells us is if we really want a budget deal we can wrap our arms around, we're going to have to win in the 2014 elections, particularly in key Senate races," Walker said.
The budget bill replaces $65 billion in across-the-board spending cuts that were set for this year and next with about $85 billion in savings during the next decade. Some conservatives complain the approach boosts deficits for two years before it starts cutting them, with no guarantee that future Congresses and administrations would stick to the plan.
"You don't get everything you want in a divided government," Ryan said in a separate appearance on "Meet the Press," along with Sen. Patty Murray, D-Wash, the other chief architect of the deal. He said they wanted to find a way to make divided government work, at least at a basic functioning level.
"We spent a lot of time just getting to know each other, talking, understanding each other's principles, and we basically learned that if we require the other to violate a core principle, we're going to get nowhere and we'll just keep gridlock," Ryan said.
Murray noted that many liberals are also upset with the budget deal, partly because it doesn't extend unemployment benefits. But she said it ensures there will be no government shutdown for the next two years.
"We didn't get everything we wanted," Murray said. "But I'll tell you what we did get, is certainty for the next two years."
© 2014 Star Tribune