Ryan lays out economic plan at Elkhorn town hall meeting
ELKHORN -- A mostly supportive crowd of from 150-200 people braved the rain Tuesday morning to listen to Rep. Paul Ryan at a town hall meeting at the Matheson Memorial Library in Elkhorn.
Ryan is back in his home district for the next two weeks and will hold a total of 19 sessions throughout Wisconsin's 1st Congressional District.
Many of those who had a chance to speak in Elkhorn supported the proposals in Ryan's budget, and were more concerned that those proposals have yet to be enacted. Ryan, for example, has long supported increasing domestic oil drilling and said he supports more offshore exploration as well as drilling in Alaska.
Some in the audience did challenge Ryan on his proposal to lower tax rates for upper income tax payers while reducing many deductions. One questioner noted that despite the Bush era tax cuts, the deficit continues to rise. "In the Bush years, taxes were cut and corporations grew, but people did poorly and deficits went up over time."
Ryan responded that historically, over time, the economy grows when tax rates are lowered. "When we lower tax rates," Ryan said, "we get faster economic growth."
After lunch, Ryan took his Power Point presentation to Delavan were a larger crowd spilled out into the hallway at the Delavan Municipal Building.
Ryan, of Janesville, is chairman of the House Budget Committee and has become the point man for Republican efforts to reign in spending and reshape the size and scope of government. The budget plan he authored changes Medicaid to a state block grant program rather than an individual entitlement. It also replaces Medicare for those under 55 with a voucher program.
The Republican controlled House passed the measure April 15, but it is unlikely to pass the Senate.
President Barack Obama, in a budget speech April 13, laid out a far different plan for reigning in government spending, setting the stage for an ideological battle that will most likely carry into the 2012 race for president.
Ryan was expected to finish his day in Janesville. Next week, his stops include Lake Geneva. The full schedule is HERE.