Conservatives aren’t buying Paul Ryan’s ‘better than nothing’ vote for fiscal cliff deal

If Rep. Paul Ryan is toast, then we must have thought he was destined for bigger things, right? Wasn’t he among the vanguard of young, conservative Republicans who were going to lead the United States back to fiscal responsibility? In fact, we seem to remember a movement to have Ryan replace John Boehner as House Speaker so that someone would finally make the tough decisions. Maybe we were dreaming, and Ryan’s “yes” vote to Tuesday’s craptastic fiscal cliff deal was a rude wake-up call.

What was he thinking? Ryan explained his “tough decision” as a necessary concession to “the realities of governing.”

Will the American people be better off if this law passes relative to the alternative? In the final analysis, the answer is undoubtedly yes. I came to Congress to make tough decisions — not to run away from them.

Now, we must return our attention to the real problem: out-of-control spending. Washington’s reckless spending drives the debt. And this debt is hurting the economy today. Unless we get at the heart of the problem, Americans will face a debt crisis — one that will threaten our most vulnerable in particular. It is our responsibility to prevent such a crisis.

Not everyone was surprised by Ryan’s vote, though.

Ryan found new support among those who most likely opposed his run for vice president. Reaching across the aisle almost always seems to do that, as long as it’s a Republican doing all the reaching. That’s what liberals call “bipartisanship.”

Ryan won kudos from some conservatives too.

Maybe that ridiculous campaign ad was a clue.

  • Red Fred

    Guess he didn’t want to get fiscal after all.

  • Christian Heiens

    It’s so sad. I had the pleasure of meeting Ryan in Harrisonburg, VA during the campaign. He spoke to a really small crowd at an off-the-cuff stop and I managed to chat with him for about a minute. I had faith in him and he really let me down yesterday.

    • catb55

      Yes .. I got the vote from yesterday and posted it on The Blaze .. I was SO mad and disappointed at the same time to see Paul Ryan voting FOR this garbage .. never again …will I support him.

  • Steve_J

    After surrendering on the “fiscal cliff” do people like McConnell and Ryan honestly think they are going to put up a fight over spending and the debt ceiling?

    • rogueco

      I’m expecting another “balanced” agreement. Most likely, a blank check to Obama in exchange for free bagels in the House cafeteria.

  • Dan Thorpe

    The deal sucks without question, and I would not have wanted to be in his shoes. You look at the bill and realize its crap but that if it gets defeated then 99% of your constituents see their taxes go up and you confirm in some people’s minds what BO and the Dems had been saying, that Republicans only care about the wealthy. While we know that is not true, sometimes you have to pick your battles. There was no way that the WH and Dems were going to cave, their guy got re-elected. The very fact that the conceded from 200/250k and made it 400/450k surprised me. Now if they cave on the debt ceiling and spending cuts then I will be angry because that is where the biggest problem is. As someone from WI, I am OK with being saved from higher taxes.

    • Vennoye

      Yeah, I’ve read all of Cornyn and Graham’s tweets and postings about what a big, bad fight they are going to put up over the debt ceiling…….Seeing is Believing!!

      • Dan Thorpe


    • ozconservative

      Agree Dan, it was the lesser of two evils.

    • Ailsa Nordstrom

      The thing they don’t realize is many of us would have preferred the fiscal cliff. Of course, I don’t like the idea of any taxes going up but at least we would have gotten the spending cuts so sorely needed.

      • Dano481971

        Actually the spending cuts were not part of this deal one way or the other. They agreed to kick the can on sequester for 2 months, so those cuts are still on the table. The Democrats won’t have as much leverage on the debt ceiling and sequester now because they got their “mandated” tax increases for the wealthy. The Republicans were smart to decouple taxes and spending cuts. While it is likely the Republicans will botch the ensuing spending cut negotiations, as far as the tax increase situation, this really was about they best they could reasonable expect to get. Despite claims by conservatives that they would rather see everyone’s marginal rates go up, the vast majority of Americans did not agree. If that had happened, the Democrats would gladly spend the extra taxes but blame them on the Republicans. Then in 2014 we have House Speaker Nancy Pelosi to go with Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and President Obama.

    • Sincerely —

      Yes, but why did they elect him . . . so he could sell out to keep getting reelected or to do what needs to be done.

    • c2


  • TJ

    Nothing better than a right on right cat fight. Everyone would love Paul Ryan if he was to take another oath in 22 days or so even with his track record.

  • Howzah123

    As someone who volunteered and worked his ass off for Ryan’s Campaign there is no other way to spin it.

    This is a major betrayal. Rand Paul 2016.

    • Guest

      stop being so over dramatic.

      • Howzah123

        Rand Paul 2012

        Time to hold people accountable and that includes Paul Ryan

  • michael s

    what do you expect from someone who couldn’t deliver his home state?

  • stuckinIL4now

    I’m just not satisfied with his explanation. He says we “will” face a debt crisis. Seems to me that ship sailed a long time ago.

    • blueniner

      Ryan revealed himself to be the dork he really is!

      • dadork

        Hey! Leave dorks out of this!

  • libertyluvur

    I’m with Ann Coulter. I’m watching something else until 2014. Luckily, I luv football.

    • to me

      oh you mean the former conservative that got us in this mess in the first place by pushing Romney?

      • c2

        She’s worse than that. She pushed Christie.

  • George Washington Mclintock

    Not even slightly thrilled, but he did have to do something with the vote. It was a shit situation all around. I was a big Ryan guy, and this vote has taken him down quite a bit, but I think he has earned another chance to distinguish himself on the debt ceiling fight. He’s not Chris Christie, and I wouldn’t throw him from the train yet.

  • blueniner

    Paul Ryans mask came off, the starched shirt stiff revealed his statist self.
    Sarah Palin 2016…..

    • c2

      Oh good grief. This is a real problem with our side – no freaking sense of proportion. Paul Ryan is not a “statist”. He chose between two bad options, as did others.

      • blueniner

        Like Mark Levin said today he is very very dissapointed in Paul Ryan, there is no explaining away his vote, he is a coward, he didnt stand up for his principles.

  • Pat Bateman

    It must be extra painful since you spent all of August and September praising Paul Ryan like he was the second coming of Christ. Your life is so complicated!

    • Scott Anderson

      I’ve been praising him for years. So yeah, this is a real ice pick to the face moment.

    • lainer51

      not quite as painful as living with the consequences of who won! BTW – second coming of Christ pales to the Messiah wanna-be now ruining, I mean, running the country.

  • Booker

    I will see what happens in the debt ceiling battle. If Ryan is silent, and doesn’t show some real backbone, then I’m writing him off. For now, let me keep quiet.

  • Ariadnea

    As a negotiator, one should not be afraid to say no and be prepared to walk out on an unfair deal. People who or will negotiate business contract, should know this important fact and skill. Paul Ryan, by agreeing to this, exposed himself as lacking the skill and spine to stand up for what’s right.

    The main problem of the US is its increasing stratospheric debt due to uncontrollable spending. Somehow Boener, Ryan and others have lost sight of the goal and was side tracked and trapped by ill planning, inconsequential noises (media), conflicting interests, and pressure. The debt hasn’t reached that height just because of Democrats alone but also by Republicans who either don’t believe on fiscal conservatism (just pretending to have them) or those who, like Ryan, incrementally let Democrats pressure and push them to agree or else. A record of capitulation, is not good to have for a leader of the US.

    Well… it’s a disappointment, but now we know. In a way, it’s good to expose probable candidates to this kind of pressure – to see what they are made of, ahead of time. Time to move on to the next candidate on that list.

    • Sincerely —


  • Scott Anderson

    When is the last time you heard Paul Ryan say anything conservative? For me, it was about the time of the GOP convention. Then he disappeared and shut up.

  • $23629333

    I’ve heard of lemmings tossing themselves off of cliffs, but this is – I believe – the first time we’ve seen such behavior from RINOs. At the rate they’re going, they’ll soon be extinct.

  • Justin Case

    You are doing it to yourselves “Conservatives”. Because all it takes to be considered a conservative and get on the ticket as a Republican is to declare yourself pro life. After that you can be a tax and spender just like the Democrats and indeed that is exactly what we’ve gotten. So they declare themselves pro life and they lose the big elections because of it or they win the insignificant ones outside the densely populated areas because of it but have the winners done anything to advance the pro life agenda? Did they in the Bush era when the time was ripe? No. In fact it’s worse now than ever before from a pro life stance. So your choice is this. Wise up and take the pro life fight and all the other divisive social issues outside the political arena changing hearts and minds through non governmental entities and get back to electing small efficient government, tax cutting conservative Republicans or continue on in the political wilderness of irrelevancy. Listen to me or continue losing elections.

    • Mama Bear

      How about we have one less abortion somewhere today, and instead you lay your life down?

      • Justin Case

        That sounds incredibly pro life.

    • Ailsa Nordstrom

      You are wrong. There are many fiscal conservatives out there who care, first and foremost, about shrinking the size and scope of the Federal government.

      • Justin Case

        But unless they are unequivocally pro life they can’t get on the ticket as a Republican and if they are then they can’t win the big elections and gain a majority in numbers great enough to effect legislation. It’s why Republicans did not take the Senate when there were 25 Democrat seats up for grabs. It’s why Republicans lost seats in the house. You’re losing the pro life fight and losing the non social issues fights because of it. Take the social issue fights outside the political arena so that you can win enough seats in congress to win the tax and spend fight, the Obamacare fight, etc.

        • Dano481971

          Justin, you don’t know what you are talking about. Republicans are more accommodating to “pro-choice” candidates than Democrats are to “pro-lifers”. Tommy Thompson is “pro-choice”, didn’t he get on the ticket in Wisconsin? Didn’t he lose? Linda McMahon was a “pro-choice” candidate. Didn’t she get on the ticket in Connecticut? Didn’t she lose? Condi Rice, Rudy Giuliani, Christie Todd Whitman, and Lincoln Chafee are just a few of the prominent “pro-choice” Republicans in the past decade. There are plenty of “moderate pro-choice” Republicans in the party. So spare us how Republicans are losing because of their stance on abortion. The fact of the matter is, Republicans lost because they let Democrats frame the debate. Unfortunately a majority of Americans agreed that the wealthy needed to pay more because Republicans failed to give a coherent response to the Democrats’ narrative.

          • Justin Case

            Guess you missed the war on women campaign.Why do you think the Democrats capture the young single women vote? Why do you think advertisers target young single women? Because there are a lot of them and they dependably show up to vote in elections and they vote with their pocket book. You can win those votes on pocket book issues but not if they won’t even listen to you based on the abortion and social issues. Two states where fiscal conservative Republicans could have unseated tax and spend Republicans MO and IN both lost because of the abortion issue.

  • SonsOfMontesQ

    how did Paul Ryan know which was the lesser of two evils? house didn’t get the bill until just minutes before the vote. he’s lying his ass off.

    • dcnj

      they all are…to believe anything else is silly. World of hurt is a comin’…

    • Dano481971

      He meant 98% of the public will not see their marginal tax rates increase in this deal, as opposed to 100% of the public facing higher rates if we went over the cliff. 2% the public seeing their marginal rates increase is the lesser of the two evils.

      • c2

        There you go sounding reasonable.

    • AMERICAN Kafir™(KAdams)

      No, he just voted the way of leadership. No independent thought, there… just following the leadership.

  • Everybodys All American

    There are 84 other idiots out there House as well. Not to mention how many Senate Republicans need to turn in their license to drive this country. Clean em out or our country is done it’s that simple.

  • Hiraghm

    “Ryan won kudos from some conservatives too.”

    What makes you think they’re conservatives any more than Ryan turned out to be?

    • Joe W.

      Kevin Eder (keder) thinks he’s God’s gift to conservatism. Pretty full of himself, really.

  • stuckinIL4now

    I commented last night that I was disappointed in Ryan’s reasons. I just heard Ryan interviewed by Charlie Sykes on Milwaukee radio so here’s a summary with my snide comments in ().

    According to Paul Ryan, the fiscal bill cuts taxes $3,800,000,000,000 dollars on Americans–meaning that he believes he voted on a tax cut because the Bush tax rates had expired at midnight on Monday and taxes had already gone up. (lame!) So he voted to reinstate expired rates and claims he voted for a tax cut. (I’m sure Ryan isn’t the only one who’s spinning it that way and there’s your political doublespeak.)

    He also says that now the taxes are “permanent”; the AMT fix is “permanent”; the estate taxes are “permanent”–(ooh, sorry, but I think estate taxes should be abolished. I’ll give him part of this, that at least the tax rates don’t expire and we don’t have to watch our idiot politicians play this juvenile game again this year–but I’m sure they’ll come up with another one.)

    Ryan says it would not have been nice for Republicans to be blamed for having delayed the vote and to be voting on it today. (What, like they’re not getting blamed anyway?)

    He further says this takes Obama’s excuse away because now we’re taxing the rich and we can finally debate spending on its own and there’s no getting around the fact that spending is a problem. (Uh huh, yeah, until the Repubs blow that argument, too.)

    He claims that they limited the damage and got the tax policies permanent, and they lived to fight another day. (Really, they call that fighting?)

    So now they’re getting a clean discussion on spending cuts without taxes in the way. Obama has to come to the table and negotiate on spending and they’re [Repubs] really serious about this. (But Obama really ISN’T.)

    Three leverage points are the debt limit, sequester and continuing resolution and the focus is on reforming healthcare entitlements–Medicare, Medicaid and Obamacare. He thinks the fact that Obamuh is a lame duck will make him change his “dug-in” tactics. Although Ryan believes that we won’t really fix the debt problem until we get a new president.

    He says he stayed quiet during the tax debate so as to not upset the negotiations or to have his criticisms of the president be interpreted as sour grapes.

    Decide for yourself. The interview will likely be posted at WTMJ’s web site if you want to listen to it.

  • riddler1620

    Republicans need to stop wanting to compromise their principals in order to get along with Democrats. And instead need to stand up for limited government. End of discussion.

  • Heywood Jblowme

    he’s a chump.

  • Sincerely —

    Very disappointing. Even more sad is that even some of my conservative friends don’t understand why this is such a bad deal.

    Compromise isn’t always a good thing, sometimes it is necessary to take a stand. We have now “compromised” our way right into a fiscal pit.

    Even though both Texas Senators caved, I am happy to say that Poe voted no.

  • lainer51

    “the realities of governing” = putting career first

    • AMERICAN Kafir™(KAdams)

      Actually, it’s ‘following the leadership’. Rush’s sit-in the other day had it right. With nobody to follow, what would Paul Ryan do? He’s not a leader, he’s just a follower.

  • Justin Case

    LOL – Boehner voted in as the “leader”. After the mid terms he will surrender the gavel to a Democrat as they take back the House running Democrat candidates who’ll pitch themselves as moderate to conservative fiscally but socially liberal. Bank it. And then there were none.

  • GTFOBigGovt

    Owww my eyeroll.

    Ryan to Hewett:

    “But now he cannot hide behind the tax increase for the rich. He’s got to put up, using his own rhetoric, using their own formula, where are the spending cuts that he says are necessary to “have a balanced plan”.

    Obama (paraphrased) yesterday:

    “I refuse to argue with this Congress [over the debt ceiling] to get them to pay for legislation THEY voted for”.

    Obama’s exactly right on that point. Ryan is either pretending or just really stupid.

  • fmahoney

    We have enough weapons to wipe out everyone on the planet 10 x over but I never hear you guys kicking up a fight when a new defense system for billions is introduced.

    God must have a sense of humor because NJ & NY republicans & democrats blasted the house for not giving up those greenbacks. An emergency, americans are suffering and you guys say No! “Pull yourselves up by your boot straps(Smile)”. The voters in those areas will not forget. In two years the extreme parts of the Republican party will be at home watching Fox entertainment news”

    Members of congress are scheduled for a pay raise??? I am asking myself WHY???

  • BeeKaaay

    Ryan is not just toast, he’s burnt toast.

    That’s what he gets for running with a rotten egg.