Congressman Lou Barletta, PA-11, today released the following statement on the budget plan proposed by House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan:
"As everyone agrees, our fiscal house is in complete disarray and spending has gotten out of control. Congressman Ryan has been a leader in addressing this problem and has been the most prominent person in Washington taking it seriously. Critics who react in a knee-jerk fashion expose themselves as being unwilling to make any difficult choices at all.
"While I will have to examine the entire document, I agree with the broad strokes of its principles. The plan projects a balanced budget by 2023 and does so by simply reducing the amount of spending increases. The proposal will see government spending rise by 3.4-percent a year for a total of $41 trillion over the next ten years. Only in Washington would people call this a cut.
"The approach to saving Medicare is thoughtful. Those who are currently enrolled or nearing retirement will not be affected. In other words, for those who are age 55 and older, nothing would change. In the future, people will be provided with options, including traditional Medicare, beginning in 2024. Medicare as it currently exists is unsustainable and a failure to address its problems at all will spell its doom.
"This is a bold proposal and I applaud Congressman Ryan for his diligence on this issue. This is just the beginning of a long budget process and I look forward to being involved as it moves forward. Americans can look at the House of Representatives as being proactive on solving our problems, unlike our friends in the U.S. Senate who have failed to adopt a budget for over 1,400 days."